NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) — A federal jury found a 63-year-old man guilty on Wednesday of multiple tax and fraud charges related to a scheme that included victims in the Hampton Roads region.
Byron Hale Delavan of Asheville, North Carolina was part of a tax fraud and investment fraud scheme that spanned five years and resulted in over $800,000 in losses to victims and over $400,000 in tax loss to the U.S., according to a release from the U.S. Attorney Eastern District of Virginia’s office.
Various people paid Delavan up to $12,500 to enroll in his fraudulent tax program, where he obtained fraudulent losses in order to offset income on their tax returns, court records state.
Delavan pretended to deduct business bad debts from nonoperational entities that he controlled, passing the losses to the clients returns as if they were the ones involved, according to court records.
He reportedly solicited business loans and investments from clients, claiming they would be used for business purposes. Instead, court records state Delavan used these funds for personal use, including private school tuition.
Additonally, Delavan would pretend to sell gold to clients, but would either lie about the existence of the gold to his clients or its value, according to court records.
The jury convicted him of 35 charges of conspiracy, tax fraud related to a fraudulent tax shelter, mail and wire fraud and money laundering. Delavan’s sentencing is scheduled for July 9.