Many small businesses outsource their payroll duties to an accountant or company that specializes in payroll processing in order to ensure that taxes get paid properly. But what happens when the accountant you hired to keep you in the clear with the IRS ends up not submitting businesses’ taxes as required? The accountant gets charged with tax fraud.
John E. Bean owned a professional employer organization (PEO) called Synergy Personnel. PEOs typically provide services for small businesses such as payroll processing, including making IRS tax payments and workers’ comp insurance payments but Bean instead allegedly used his PEO in an elaborate scheme to pocket the cash.
Bean’s co-conspirators, John D. Walker and Patrick G. Mire, have both pleaded guilty: conspiracy and false statements for the former and mail-fraud conspiracy and conspiracy to launder money for the latter. Both are also cooperating with the ongoing investigation. Bean has been charged with fraud conspiracy, mail fraud and money laundering to the tune of $110 million dollars over a five-year period.
Although $110 million dollars seems like a sum that would last for quite some time, Bean told U.S. Magistrate Judge John Primomo that he would not be able to come up with 10 percent cash of a $100,000 bail. Judge Primomo denied Bean’s request for a signature bond, as well.
At least 15 different companies, including Synergy Personnel and Bean’s accounting business, have been implicated in this investigation.