Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Couple acquitted of tax fraud

Pam and James Moran are taking their time driving home from Seattle to Montrose, Colo., since it seems like they have all the time in the world.

That hasn't always been the case. For the past seven years, they've lived with the possibility that they would spend their middle age behind bars.

Things were darkest just after Christmas 2004, when a federal jury in Seattle convicted them — along with 10 others — in a massive conspiracy and tax-evasion scheme known as Anderson's Ark and Associates, based in Seattle. Hundreds of investors lost as much as $62 million in the scheme, which involved sham investments and tax shelters in Costa Rica.

The Morans each faced seven years in prison and were ordered to pay restitution of more than $30 million.

The couple appealed and won a new trial. And last week — almost three years to the day of their convictions — another Seattle jury acquitted them of a combined 74 felony counts following a 21-day trial. "We chose to take a stand and let the truth be told," Pamela Moran, 56, said Thursday by phone.

Read more here.


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