Loudon County Couple Pleads Guilty to Tax Charges

Monday, June 13, 2016 | 11:38am

LOUDON - The Special Investigations Section of the Tennessee Department of Revenue conducted the investigation that led to Friday’s guilty plea of Christy Michelle Russell and Michael Dale Russell on tax charges.

Christy Russell, 39, and Michael Russell, 44, each pleaded guilty to tax charges before Loudon County Criminal Court Judge Jeffery Wicks. Judge Wicks ordered joint restitution of $5,198.00 payable to the state of Tennessee. He placed Christy Russell on two years of supervised probation, and he placed Michael Russell on 11 months and 29 days probation.

A Loudon County Grand Jury previously indicted the Russells in April 2016 on one count of tax evasion related to the false registration of vehicles and a boat at the Loudon County Clerk’s Office.

“The Department of Revenue promotes voluntary taxpayer compliance by educating taxpayers, aggressively pursuing criminal sanctions and demanding accountability when taxpayers engage in fraudulent activity," Revenue Commissioner Richard Roberts said. "This investigation underscores the Department's ongoing efforts to enforce Tennessee's tax laws."

The Department pursued the criminal case in cooperation with District Attorney General Russell Johnson’s office and his staff. Citizens who suspect violations of Tennessee’s revenue laws should call the toll-free tax fraud hot line at (800) FRAUDTX (372-8389).

The Department of Revenue is responsible for the administration of state tax laws and motor vehicle title and registration laws and the collection of taxes and fees associated with those laws. The Department collects about 87 percent of total state revenue. During the 2015 fiscal year, it collected $12.6 billion in state taxes and fees and more than $2.4 billion in taxes and fees for local governments. To learn more about the Department, visit www.tn.gov/revenue.