New York City Councilman removed from office after pleading guilty to tax fraud

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Wednesday, April 28, 2021
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New York City Councilman Chaim Deutsch has been removed from office after he pleaded guilty to tax fraud last Thursday.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- New York City Councilman Chaim Deutsch has been removed from office after he pleaded guilty to tax fraud last Thursday.

Deutsch admitted to claiming personal expenses as business expenses totaling $82,000.

City Council Speaker Corey Johnson released a statement on Tuesday, confirming Deutsch's removal.

"Based on our review of the charging document and Mr. Chaim Deutsch's plea agreement, the Council has concluded that the office of the 48th Council District has been vacated under the operation of law. Mr. Deutsch confessed to a crime and violated his oath of office. He is no longer a member of the City Council," Johnson said.

Deutsch, who represented Brooklyn, filed a false and fraudulent income tax return to the IRS in 2016.

"New York City Council Member Chaim Deutsch admitted today that he defrauded the IRS in connection with his real estate business," U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss said. "As an elected official and community leader, Deutsch had a particular responsibility to follow the law. Instead, over a multi-year period, Deutsch concealed his true business income to avoid paying his fair share of taxes. My Office will continue to work tirelessly with our law enforcement partners to hold our elected officials accountable when they break the law for their own financial benefit."

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Deutsch pleaded guilty to a single count of filing a false tax return for the tax year 2015 and agreed to restitution in the amount of at least $82,076 plus interest.

"Today, my client pled guilty to a one count misdemeanor tax offense of making false statements on a tax return," his attorney, Henry Mazurek, said. "He accepts responsibility for his actions and intends to fully repay the $82,000 in taxes he owes. Mr. Deutsch's dedication to public service will not be diminished, and he looks forward to completing his elected term."

Deutsch was released on $10,000 bond with travel restrictions ahead of sentencing in July.

He faces a maximum sentence of one year in prison, one year of supervised release, and a $100,000 fine.

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