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Libby tax evader sentenced to probation

Posted at 6:35 PM, May 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-17 13:17:37-04

MISSOULA – A Libby woman has been given five years probation for not paying income taxes.

Candace Hessel Cummings, who admitted to not paying income taxes, was sentenced Thursday to five years of probation and ordered to pay $48,516 restitution, U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme said.

Cummings, 65, pleaded guilty to tax evasion in January.

Prosecutors said in court records that Cummings failed to report income of about $140,188 in 2012, which produced a tax loss of $35,096, and income of about $52,500 in 2013, which produced a tax loss of $13,420.

In late 2011, Cummings became the financial caretaker for a person who was unable to care for herself.

Adult Protective Services assigned a power of attorney to Cummings on the individual’s behalf. APS told Cummings she needed to keep track of receipts for expenses she paid for the individual, and Cummings agreed to serve as a fiduciary without compensation.

In 2012 and 2013, Cummings used the individual’s money for personal expenses and failed to report the money as income on her own tax returns.

In 2013, after several suspicious transactions involving the individual’s certificates of deposit and savings bonds, the bank contacted APS and local law enforcement. APS revoked Cummings’ power of attorney based on the suspicious activity.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy Racicot prosecuted case, which was investigated by the IRS’s Criminal Investigation Division.