On Thursday, September 21, 2017, Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg announced that a Chelan Falls, Washington man had been sentenced in absentia to 30 months in prison. The defendant, 46-year-old Jose L. Echeverria, was sentenced for filing a fraudulent federal tax return for the 2011 tax year. Documents in the case show that the defendant operated a produce sales business in Chelan Falls from 2009 to 2012.

The defendant was accused of filing fraudulent tax returns for tax years 2009 to 2012. It was alleged that the Echeverria underreported his company’s income by $564,292. In return, this caused a tax loss of roughly $183,191. During this period of time, Echeverria wired hundreds of thousands of dollars to an account in Mexico. That money was later used to purchase land, vacation homes and vehicles.

The defendant has also been sentenced to a year of supervised release and restitution of $183,191. Echeverria pleaded guilty to the charges in February and is believed to have fled to Mexico. At this point in time, he is a fugitive from justice.

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