ATLANTA (Nov. 26, 2002) — An Atlanta man has pleaded guilty to one count of filing a false tax return in connection with an alleged scheme involving fraudulent promises of providing tire franchises to investors.
Michael Edward Eakin, 57, was sentenced Nov. 22 to one year and one day in prison, and to make restitution of $119,397 to the Internal Revenue Service, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Atlanta. He also must undergo three years' supervised release after serving his prison sentence.
Mr. Eakin was charged with filing false tax returns in calendar years 1994 and 1995. According to the indictment, Mr. Eakin did not pay taxes on an undisclosed amount of income he made by telling investors he would use their money to buy Goodyear's truck tire alignment division, then reward them with tire dealerships after the deal went through.
He then pocketed the money, according to the IRS and the U.S. Attorney's Office. Mr. Eakin pleaded guilty on the tax evasion count July 1.
"Goodyear was also a victim in this case too, since it was their good name Eakin used to defraud investors," said a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office. Goodyear officials could not be reached for comment.