Lawyer charged with failure to pay taxes

14 years ago

By Kathy McCarty
Staff Writer

PRESQUE ISLE — A local attorney has entered a not guilty plea in Augusta District Court on 12 charges that he allegedly failed to file and pay income taxes in Maine over a five-year period.

“Alan F. Harding, 57, of Presque Isle, was arraigned recently, with his attorney, Walter McKee, of the Augusta-based law firm of Lipman, Katz & McKee, entering his plea of ‘not guilty’ on all counts shortly before the holiday,” said Gregg Bernstein, assistant attorney general, who is prosecuting the case.

The assistant attorney general indicated the case could have been heard in Aroostook but Augusta District Court was selected based on its proximity to the Attorney General’s Office.

Bernstein said the charges stem from an investigation that discovered Harding failed to pay taxes between 2004-09.

“Harding failed to file and pay state taxes, according to an investigator with the Maine Revenue Service. The charges include six counts of failure to make and file Maine income tax returns and six counts of failure to pay Maine State income taxes,” Bernstein said.

When asked whether the case involved business or personal taxes and the amount owed, Bernstein said those details were not being released.

“I can’t get into how much or what type — whether personal or business taxes. Tax information is confidential,” he said.

Bernstein indicated that “standard procedures were followed by the criminal investigation unit,” and that the case was “treated the same as any other case.”

“Whether it’s an individual case or a business matter, all cases are treated the same,” noted Bernstein.

Attempts to reach McKee for comment were unsuccessful at presstime.

A court date has been set for Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2011, at 8:30 a.m. in Augusta District Court. The maximum penalty for conviction on each Class D charge is up to one year in jail and up to a $2,000 fine.