Four St. Joseph family members indicted for $1.5 million tax fraud

Indictment

Four St. Joseph, Mo., residents were indicted by a federal grand jury for their roles in a $1.5 million tax fraud scheme as well as individual tax fraud.

Dinorah Stoll-Weaver, 48, her sister, Dawn Langlais (formerly Ankrom-Brown), 58, her husband, Thad Weaver, 45, and Langlais’s daughter, Jennifer Sturgis, 37, all of St. Joseph, were charged in a 23-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Kansas City, Mo.

From 2001 through early 2010, Stoll-Weaver owned, and with the assistance of Langlais, operated Homeward Bound Health Services, Inc., a home health provider located in St. Joseph. In 2010, Stoll-Weaver changed Homeward Bound’s name to Silver Linings, Inc., and put in place nominee owners. According to the indictment, these nominee owners signed the checks but made no business decisions; Stoll-Weaver and Langlais maintained control and continued to operate Silver Linings, which closed in 2013.

Stoll-Weaver and Langlais employed other relatives at Homeward Bound and Silver Linings, including Weaver and Sturgis.

Today’s indictment alleges that Stoll-Weaver and Langlais participated in a conspiracy to willfully fail to pay over employment taxes to the IRS and to steal from a health care benefit program from Oct. 1, 2009, to Jan. 31, 2013. Stoll-Weaver and Langlais withheld $508,088 in employment taxes from the paychecks of their employees, the indictment says, but instead of forwarding those taxes to the government, took them as additional income for themselves and for relatives.

According to the indictment, between 2009 – 2012, when the employment taxes were withheld but not paid to the IRS, Stoll-Weaver and Langlais personally spent approximately $868,565 from business accounts by transferring funds to their own account for personal expenses. They also wrote checks to cash and made cash withdrawals.

Homeward Bound and Silver Linings allegedly withheld and collected $341,996 in federal income taxes, Social Security taxes, and Medicare taxes from employees from 2010 to 2012 and then kept those withheld taxes instead of paying them.

Additionally, Homeward Bound allegedly failed to pay the employer portion of Social Security and Medicare taxes from 2010 to 2012 totaling $166,091. Homeward Bound allegedly failed to pay federal income tax withholdings, and both the employee and employer portions of Social Security tax and Medicare tax, for years prior to 2010. Total employment taxes due and owing for Homeward Bound and Silver Linings from 2005 to 2010 are $765,748. 

Homeward Bound and Silver Linings allegedly failed to pay federal unemployment taxes for 2002 to 2009 totaling $24,049. Homeward Bound and Silver Linings allegedly withheld and failed to pay over Missouri state income taxes from 2007 to 2010 totaling $291,204. In like manner, Homeward Bound and Silver Linings withheld from employee paychecks and kept child support payments, employee IRA contributions and medical and dental insurance payments.  The theft of these payments from employees had negative collateral consequences for their employees.

The total criminal tax loss for failure to pay employment taxes due and owing from 2001 to 2012 is $1,502,760.

All of the defendants allegedly failed to declare and properly report their income on their personal federal income tax returns.

From at least 2009 to 2012, Stoll-Weaver, Langlais, Weaver and Sturgis all received income from Homeward Bound and Silver Linings, the indictment says, which they failed to report on their individual federal income tax forms, and as a result underpaid their federal income taxes. According to the indictment, Langlais has not filed an income tax return since 2008. Additionally, from 2009 to 2012, Stoll-Weaver, Weaver, and Sturgis each allegedly claimed personal federal income tax refunds, knowing that Homeward Bound and Silver Linings had not paid any income taxes to the IRS.

In addition to the conspiracy, Stoll-Weaver and Langlais are charged together in one count of theft from a health care benefit program and 11 counts of willful failure to pay taxes totaling $282,056.

Stoll-Weaver and Weaver are also charged together with four counts of making false statements on tax returns by failing to report a total of $257,826 of unreported income. Sturgis is charged with three counts of making false statements on tax returns by failing to report a total of $150,192 of unreported income. Langlais is also charged with three counts of failing to file tax returns for tax years 2010, 2011 and 2012.