TRENTON — A federal grand jury indicted an Ocean County lawyer Thursday on multiple charges of evading more than $1 million in taxes, filing false income returns, failing to pay the IRS and false statements on a bank loan application.
A news release from the New Jersey U.S. Attorney’s Office said charges against George Gilmore, 69, of Toms River, include one count of income tax evasion for 2013, 2014 and 2015; two counts of filing false tax returns for 2013 and 2014; failing to pay payroll taxes in 2016 and making false statements on a 2015 Ocean First Bank loan application.
As of Dec. 31, 2016, Gilmore owed the IRS $1,520,329 in taxes, penalties and interest, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Gilmore is a partner at Gilmore and Monahan law offices in Toms River. He also has served as Ocean County GOP chairman since 1996. Court documents state Gilmore has primary control over the firm’s finances.
It is alleged that from January 2014 to December 2016, Gilmore used the law firm’s bank accounts to pay more than $2 million worth of personal expenses, including cashing checks and taking out cash advances on a corporate credit card. The law firm also withheld payroll taxes from the employees’ salaries and wages to cover individual income, Social Security and Medicare tax obligations under Gilmore’s accounting.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office alleges Gilmore avoided paying his taxes by concealing information from the IRS, falsely reported his income and filed false tax returns.
Court documents showed Gilmore under-reported his income in tax returns for 2013 and 2014. In November 2014 to October 2015, he told IRS collections officers he would make partial payments for outstanding tax liabilities.
He then sent a check to the IRS in 2014 for $493,526 from a personal bank account with no more than $2,500. The check bounced, but Gilmore never resubmitted payment.
Investigators say Gilmore spent more than $80,000 toward the remodeling of his home including building an infinity pool, a cabana, marble flooring and a mahogany and cherry wood fireplace mantle. Gilmore also allegedly purchased a $20,000 Steinway piano, $80,000 in collectible model trains, $440,000 of various antiques, art and animal tusks, along with spending more than $100,000 on vacations in Colorado and more than $700,000 for mortgages and expenses for five other real estate properties.
On Nov. 21, 2014, Gilmore applied for a $1.5 million mortgage refinancing loan which had a “cash out” provision. However, Gilmore failed to disclose his 2013 outstanding tax liabilities as well as other person loans. He received $527,000 from the cash out portion of the loan that he did not apply to his unpaid taxes, the U.S. Attorneys Office said.
If convicted, Gilmore could face up to 51 year in prison and a combined $1.5 million in fines. The maximum penalty for loan application fraud is 30 years in prison, while tax evasion and each count of failing to pay over payroll taxes has a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison and each count of filing a false tax return has a maximum penalty of 3 years in prison.
An arraignment date has not yet been set.