A tax attorney who fraudulently claimed refunds for a Super Bowl winner, stole the funds and filed false documents with the Internal Revenue Service to cover up the scheme was sentenced Monday in Los Angeles to three years in federal prison.
Hiram M. Martin, 71, pleaded guilty in January to one count of attempting to obstruct and impede the administration of internal revenue laws.
In addition to the prison time, Martin was also ordered by U.S. District Judge Otis D. Wright II to pay more than $1.2 million in restitution.
According to federal prosecutors, Martin submitted tax returns for now-retired NFL safety Antrel Rolle in 2005 and 2006 that claimed millions of dollars in charity deductions and business expenses, leading to IRS refunds of about $322,000 and $900,000. The refunds were deposited into bank accounts Martin controlled, and he used the money for his own benefit, prosecutors said.
Martin gave Rolle copies of fabricated tax returns that did not claim any refunds to prevent him from learning about the fraud, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
When the IRS began auditing Rolle, Martin submitted phony documents to the agency in an attempt to conceal his actions, and some of those documents included Rolle’s forged signature, prosecutors said.
Without Rolle’s knowledge, Martin eventually agreed to a $2 million tax liability judgment against Rolle, who hired another attorney and was able to have the judgment set aside due to the fraud.
Rolle, who attended the University of Miami, played 11 seasons in the NFL, winning a Super Bowl with the New York Giants in February 2012.