NORWALK : Man Gets 18-Month Prison Term in Tax Evasion Case
A Norwalk man was sentenced Thursday to 18 months in federal prison for failing to report $308,000 in income for referring accident victims and other clients to a personal injury lawyer.
Tommy Choi, 30, was convicted in August after a government crackdown on an underground referral system, know as “capping,” that is fueled by lucrative finders fees and cash kickbacks for cappers, doctors and lawyers.
Choi brought 137 clients into the Wilshire Boulevard practice of Robert Standard in 1987 and 1988, and cashed more than 90 paychecks from the attorney, said Assistant U.S. Atty. Alka Sagar.
Choi denied that he was paid for referring clients. He testified that he cashed the checks for Standard because the attorney was too busy to go to the bank, and he said he handed over all the money.
Choi was found guilty on one count each of income tax evasion and failing to properly report the money earned in 1988.