Two public employees in CT charged with tax evasion

Two public employees in Connecticut have been indicted for tax evasion in separate cases. One is a state employee and the other works for a regional public water and sewer company.

Indicted on March 9 were:

— Troy Hester, 42, of Hartford, who is employed by the Metropolitan District Commission, which provides public water and sewers to the greater Hartford region.

— Ajmal Jenkins, 39, of Middletown, who works for the state Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services and works at the Connecticut Valley Hospital.

The indictments were a result of an Internal Revenue Service investigation into state of Connecticut employees and others who had little or no federal withholding taken out of their paychecks and who failed to file income tax returns.

The investigation revealed that certain individuals submitted fraudulent W-4 forms claiming numerous exemptions, or that they were exempt, and had no money withheld from their wages.

The specific allegations

The six-count indictment against Hester alleges that, during the 2008 through 2013 tax years, he paid little or no federal income taxes on about $438,877 in income he received, resulting in a federal tax loss of approximately $70,480.

The four-count indictment against Jenkins alleges that, during the 2009 through 2012 tax years, he paid no federal income taxes on approximately $256,081 in income he received, resulting in a federal tax loss of approximately $46,265.

The indictments were returned by a federal grand jury in New Haven. Hester and Jenkins were later arraigned in Bridgeport federal court, before U.S. Magistrate Judge William I. Garfinkel.

Who is overseeing the case

This case is being investigated by the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigation Division, and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Susan Wines of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Connecticut.

Deirdre M. Daly, U.S. attorney for Connecticut, stressed that an indictment is not evidence of guilt.  Charges are only allegations, and each defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, she said.