North Carolina Couple Pleads Guilty to Bank Fraud and Tax Fraud Related to Their Online Business

The defendants failed to report more than $1 million earned from sales through eBay and Amazon

North Carolina Couple Pleads Guilty to Bank Fraud and Tax Fraud Related to Their Online Business
Image: Pixabay
August 3, 2016

A Greensboro, North Carolina couple who operated an online sales business pleaded guilty this week in federal court to bank fraud and tax fraud charges, the U.S. Department of Justice (USDOJ) announced.

Daniel Balson pleaded guilty to one count of filing a false tax return for 2010 and one count of making a false statement on a loan application. Renee Balson pleaded guilty to one count of making a false statement on a loan application.

According to court documents, Daniel Balson owned and operated Southern Sales Online (SSO), an online retail business that sold a variety of merchandise through eBay and Amazon, including scrapbooking and art materials, books, inspirational DVDs, pet supplies and tools.

Daniel Balson admitted selling stolen merchandise through SSO. Although SSO earned over $1 million in gross receipts during tax years 2005 through 2011, the Balsons failed to report those gross receipts on their tax returns. The Balsons also failed to report the income from SSO on a bank application for a mortgage loan modification in 2011.

The USDOJ says that the Balsons each face a statutory maximum sentence of 30 years in prison for making a false statement on a loan application. Daniel Balson also faces a statutory maximum sentence of three years for filing a false tax return. The Balsons also face substantial monetary penalties and restitution.

A sentencing hearing for both defendants has been scheduled for November 3, 2016.