High County Crime: Vail Valley business owner pleads guilty to dodging $188K in taxes
March 11, 2018
A former Eagle County business owner admitted he dodged more than $188,000 in federal taxes.
Sergio Murillo, 42, who now lives in Aurora, was indicted a year ago on four counts of tax evasion by a federal grand jury in Grand Junction. He pleaded guilty to a different charge, obstructing or impeding the due administration of the Internal Revenue Code, the IRS announced Thursday, March 8.
Murillo owned Mountain High Window Cleaning in Avon. The firm cleaned windows, removed snow and provided a few other property management services, the feds said in announcing Murillo's plea.
Federal prosecutors say that between 2007 and 2010, Murillo concealed hundreds of thousands of dollars in income earned through his business and attempted to dodge $188,578 in federal income taxes.
During IRS audits, Murillo falsely told an IRS revenue agent that his clients determined whether to make checks payable to Mountain High or to him, federal prosecutors said. The indictment says Murillo told IRS agents he deposited all Mountain High money into a business bank account, the only account he claimed to have.
However, the feds say he maintained several accounts at Wells Fargo and U.S. Bank under the name Sergio A. Murillo-Nunez, into which a portion of Mountain High's business receipts were deposited.
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In 2007, for example, Murillo claimed the business lost $23,481 and that he owed no income taxes. IRS agents claim he earned $138,052, and that he owed $40,305 in taxes, according to the indictment.
Between 2007 and 2010, Murillo earned $621,762, but claimed the business lost $62,661, the indictment said. Murillo is scheduled to be sentenced at 9 a.m. May 7.
Calls to Mountain High Window Cleaning and Snow Removal for comment were not returned. Steven Osborne, United States Attorney's Office for the District of Colorado and IRS Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge, announced Murillo's plea.
-Randy Wyrick, The Vail Daily
Just released from custody, Glenwood man loiters in police parking lot and scratches trucks
On Tuesday morning, March 6, officers at the Glenwood Springs Police Department were advised that a 30-year-old male was in the parking lot attempting to open officers' personal cars by checking the door handles.
The man was released on a summons for a previous incident approximately one hour earlier, and had been hanging around the parking lot since then, according to the arrest affidavit.
An officer approached the man, but he could only see him from the chest up as he was between two trucks. The man was facing the officer. The officer ordered him to put his hands up, and he did not. The officer drew his Taser and again ordered to see the man's hands. He did not comply. He was ordered to turn around and place his hands on top of his head. Another officer then "went hands on" with the man and attempted to handcuff him.
"(The man) immediately became resistive towards officers," according to the affidavit. "(He) turned around and faced officers and clinched both of his fists and brought them towards his chest making a fighting stance." The man was given several orders to stop resisting.
The fight then went to the ground with the 30-year-old continuing to resist. An officer delivered a knee strike "striking him in the upper stomach and chest area." The man made his body rigid and would not turn over to be handcuffed. A lieutenant then grabbed the man by his foot and dragged him out from between the trucks. The man was then escorted to the jail.
It was discovered that there were "several deep scratches" on both trucks' driver's side doors. The man was charged with criminal mischief, a felony, and misdemeanors of criminal tampering and resisting arrest.
-Sallee Ann Ruibal, Glenwood Springs Post-Independent
Man leaps through window, runs across highway to escape bail bondsman
On Feb. 26, a bail bondsman went to a residence in Keystone to arrest a client who had voided their agreement by lying to him.
When the bondsman contacted the man, he ran to the back of the room and leapt headfirst through a rear window, kicking the bondsman in the process. The bondsman climbed out the window and chased after him, but he escaped by running across Highway 6.
The next day, the bondsman apprehended the man at the hospital with the help of an acquaintance and escorted him out with his hands zip-tied behind his back. Security camera footage would later show the man dropping a small bag of methamphetamine as he passed the hospital entrance. (A nurse found the bag and reported it to police.)
On the way to the jail, the bondsman sat in the back while his acquaintance drove. The bondsman continually had to keep the man from getting his hands into his pockets. After the man was booked, the acquaintance found a crack pipe in the back seat where the man had been sitting.
Later at the jail, deputies confronted the man about the security camera footage and the bag of methamphetamine. He told them he had just been spitting out some gum. He was charged with multiple drug offenses, violation of bond conditions and harassment for the scuffle with the bondsman.
-Jack Queen, Summit Daily News
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