Businessman admits tax-avoiodance scheme

The owner of a Hudson trucking company has pleaded guilty to charges relating to a scheme to avoid paying full taxes on his employees’ wages.

Robert B. Stalker, owner of Robert’s Dismantling and Recycling Corp. pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges Dec. 2 in U.S. District Court in Concord. According to the U.S. attorney’s office, he admitted that between 1996 and 200, he paid his employees in case, under the table, for all overtime work they performed and that he never reported the cash payments to the Internal Revenue Service.

U.S. Attorney Thomas Colantuono said that the scheme not only resulted in underpayment o f taxes, but also impeded the federal Department of Transportation in its efforts to review trucking company records for safety violations. Colantuono also said it resulted in defrauding worker compensation insurance carriers because the false IRS filings, dramatically under-reported payroll figures, on which the worker comp premiums are established.

To accomplish his scheme, Colantuono said, Stalker asked businesses that owed his company money to pay him by checks made payable in false names. He then cashed more than $1.3 million worth of those false payee checks at a check-cashing company in Massachusetts. As a result, the cash never showed up on the company’s books.

He also wrote more than $750,000 in checks from the Robert’s Dismantling bank accountant, made payable to companies he actually did business with and to fictitious companies, and then cashed many of those checks at the Massachusetts check-cashing company. The result was that his company’s books showed expenses it never incurred.

Stalker’s sentencing is scheduled for March 16, 2006. – JEFF FEINGOLD

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