A former delegate is indicted again Lester Jones reindicted in making false statements on tax returns.

March 22, 1991|By Kelly Gilbert | Kelly Gilbert,Evening Sun Staff

Former Baltimore County Del. Lester V. Jones, indicted last fall on federal income tax evasion charges, has been reindicted on charges of making false statements on amended returns that he filed to correct errors on the originals.

A grand jury returned a four-count "superseding indictment" yesterday against Jones that added two new false-statement charges and increased the amounts by which he is accused of having understated his income on his 1983 and 1984 tax returns.

The new indictment, filed in U.S. District Court in Baltimore, says Jones originally claimed $51,318 in taxable income for 1983 and paid $15,879 in taxes on it. But his true taxable income was approximately $170,000, and he owed the government about $68,000 in taxes, the document says.

In 1984, Jones paid $15,940 in taxes on claimed taxable income of $50,792. But the indictment charges that he actually owed $93,000 in taxes on income of about $217,000.

In all, the indictment alleges that Jones underreported his true taxable income by $284,890 for the two years, and underpaid his taxes by $129,181.

The indictment also says Jones reported gross receipts of $293,002 from his law practice for 1983 and gross receipts of $422,907 from the practice in 1984 on amended returns he filed with the IRS in late 1986.

Jones filed the amended returns after he was told that he was under investigation for tax evasion. But the indictment charges that those figures were false, too, and that Jones "knew and believed he had received additional gross receipts which should have been included" on the amended returns.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph L. Evans said the new charges grew out of continued investigation by the IRS since Jones was indicted last fall.

The false statement charges, and other court records already filed in the case, suggest that Jones pocketed money he should have reported as income.

But Evans would not say -- and court records don't disclose -- the amount of gross receipts that Jones allegedly failed to report on his amended tax returns.

Jones, 58, practices law in Bel Air and lives in Hydes, Md., and South Florida. He served in the House of Delegates from 1966 to 1975.

He pleaded not guilty to the original tax charges last November and currently is scheduled for trial July 1.

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