Jefferson County man pleads guilty to tax fraud

Jefferson County man pleads guilty to tax fraud

A Jefferson County man pleaded guilty in Jefferson County to tax fraud Wednesday.

David W. Zehnder, 55, a Fort Atkinson accountant, pleaded guilty to four felony counts of filing fraudulent Wisconsin income tax returns and one felony count of theft.

According to the criminal complaint, Zehnder operated A-Z Productivity, Inc., a tax preparation firm.

Officials said Zehnder knowingly filed at least 83 false Wisconsin income tax returns by overstating the itemized deduction credits on his customers’ returns.

As a result, the news release said Zehnder overstated the credits by nearly $74,000.

Zehnder also stole or attempted to steal $32,312 of customers’ refunds by diverting a portion of the tax refunds into accounts he controlled, according to the release.

As part of his bond conditions, Zehnder was ordered not to prepare any state or federal tax returns for others.

A sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 19.

Zehnder could face up to 34 years in prison, a $65,000 fine or both.

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