A former Utah airline pilot was ordered to pay $71,798 after pleading guilty to two
felony tax fraud charges. William Joseph Shields, 52, was sentenced on May 10 by Third District Court Judge Robin W. Reese after entering into a plea agreement with state prosecutors.
Shields was living and building homes in Summit County while working for two different aviation companies from 2005 to 2008. During this time he was earning more than $100,000 each year and state evidence shows he went to great efforts to claim residency in non-income-tax states in order to avoid paying taxes in Utah.
“Mr. Shields was a resident of Utah and enjoyed many benefits while living here. He was building properties and using the transportation, legal and education systems while scheming to avoid his obligation to help fund those operations,” says Attorney General John Swallow. “He will now be required to pay his share like anyone who resides in our terrific state.”
Shields was originally charged with tax evasion between 2005 and 2008. Judge Reese ordered him to pay taxes, penalties and interest going back to 2002 which totaled $71,798. He was also ordered to perform 200 hours of community service and his guilty pleas will be held in abeyance if he cooperates with law enforcement and doesn’t commit any more crimes for the next six years.
This case was brought by investigators from the Utah State Tax Commission and was prosecuted by the Office of the Attorney General.