A Minnesota woman is charged with tax fraud after federal prosecutors say she didn't pay taxes and claimed she and her husband were residents of the "Kingdom of Heaven," not the U.S., the Pioneer Press reports.
Tami May was indicted in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis Friday, the paper reports, on 15 counts of filing false tax returns, plus one count of obstructing IRS laws.
According to the Star Tribune, May filed "zero income" tax returns despite bringing in hundreds of thousands of dollars from she and her husband's business, D & T & Son Excavating in Coon Rapids. Before that, in 2005 the IRS had warned the couple about not properly filing from 1998-2005, the paper reports.
The Pioneer Press says May claimed zero income and reported fake withholdings to get refunds.
The charges come after a separate high-profile case of accused fraud in Minnesota.
Colin Chisholm III, 62, and Andrea Chisholm, 54, were charged in March with taking more than $167,000 in welfare benefits, despite having $3.2 million in the bank and living in a luxurious lakefront home in Deephaven. The charges also say the couple also purchased 83-foot yacht for $1.2 million and owned a seaside home in Florida.
The Chisholms are accused of illegally obtaining public health care assistance in Minnesota, while at the same time receiving food stamps, cash and medical assistance from Florida welfare programs from 2005-2012, the complaint says.
The Star Tribune said Hennepin County District Court Judge Tanya Bransford agreed to double the bail for the couple to $300,000 each. A prosecutor had argued the couple is a flight risk – pointing out that they’d made arrangements for the care of Andrea Chisholm’s 99-year-old grandmother and stored boxes of financial documents at a neighbor’s home.
The county also asked the judge to verify that the Chisholms qualify for a public defender, the newspaper reports.