The Feds and the Defendant’s Own Tax Attorney Partnered to Falsely Convict Him. Now, the IRS is Targeting this Honest Taxpayer Using the Same Dishonest Arguments.
By US~Observer Staff
Phoenix, AZ – In a case of wrongful conviction that just keeps giving, Michael Quiel is being attacked civilly for fines associated with his case. To push the fines in court, the government is using its previously conspired narrative that Mr. Quiel had filed certain tax documents in previous years – it’s an assertion that Quiel can now prove beyond all doubt never happened. Not only should the government’s civil case be thrown out, his conviction should be vacated.
In 2006, Arizona resident Michael Quiel was notified he was being audited for tax years 2000 to 2003. IRS Agent Cheryl Bradley was representing the IRS as the auditor. Early into the audit Bradley told Mr. Quiel that the audit was very specific regarding a corporate credit card Mr. Quiel previously used.
The credit card was issued by a Belize corporation that contracted with Mr. Quiel and was issued by a bank located in Belize. The credit card was issued for business expenses and was given to Mr. Quiel in 2000. In 2003 the card was returned, and the account was closed. Over that period of time there was roughly $220,000 charged on the card in expenses. Ms. Bradley was interested in the Belize credit card because the charges on the card were not listed on Mr. Quiel’s personal tax returns.
Not knowing what to do, Mr. Quiel searched the Internet for an attorney and found self-proclaimed offshore tax expert Christopher Rusch. After being retained by Quiel, Rusch began working directly with IRS agent Bradley.
From the period of January 2006 to June 2006, Rusch and Bradley negotiated a settlement. As conditioned from the settlement, it was required that Mr. Quiel add the $220,000 in charges that were on the card onto his personal tax returns for years 2000 to 2003. Rusch acted as tax preparer and amended Mr. Quiel’s tax returns for the years 2000 to 2003. It is important to recognize when a tax return is amended that only the pages that are amended are included and re-filed. The original return pages are not amended and are not included in the amended returns.
By June 2006, Mr. Quiel’s audit was complete. Rusch had amended the tax returns and all three parties Mr. Quiel, Rusch, and Bradley, signed off on a settlement agreement. Mr. Quiel was required to pay taxes and fines for the years 2000 to 2003. The taxes and fines were paid immediately. Years later in 2013, at Quiel’s criminal trial associated with a foreign bank account created by Christopher Rusch, Bradley testified Mr. Quiel did not want to pay the settled upon fines and required a payment plan.
On day three of the trial transcripts, Bradley responds to question’s asked by prosecutor Monica Edelstein:
Edelstein: Was payment due on the additional tax and penalties at this time?
Edelstein: Did Mr. Quiel pay at this time?
Bradley: No. They requested an installment agreement.
Edelstein: What is an installment agreement?
Bradley: It’s an agreement form where they agree to certain installments that are paid monthly to pay off their tax due.
According to several people associated with the case, Bradley’s testimony was absolute perjury and was designed to damage Mr. Quiel’s character in front of the jury. Mr. Quiel had in fact paid all taxes and fees immediately (Quiel notified Rusch it was being done). This can be confirmed by the Internal Revenue Service stamped “received” checks, all marked on the same day – Oct. 30, 2006.
The Swiss Account
Shortly after the 2006 audit was complete, Rusch, the international tax expert, began soliciting his new client Mr. Quiel with many different types of new offshore ventures. One of the ventures Rusch sold to Mr. Quiel was to invest in a Swiss Bank owned and operated by Rusch. Rusch was going to operate the bank along with management, which was handpicked and hired by Rusch himself. Mr. Quiel invested millions and acquired 4% of Rusch’s Swiss Bank. According to Rusch, the 4% ownership of the Swiss Bank would not require reporting and was recommended by Rusch. This was explained in detail by Rusch in an e-mail explaining the exact way Mr. Quiel needed to report the investment on his taxes. Mr. Quiel did not question Rusch’s tax advice and followed the instructions exactly as Rusch instructed.
Rusch not only sold Mr. Quiel 4% of his Swiss Bank, he also represented him as counsel in the same venture. This is an ethical violation that would require a waiver that Rusch never obtained from Mr. Quiel.
In March of 2010, Mr. Quiel found out he was the target of an IRS and DOJ criminal investigation. The investigation was for Quiel’s involvement in corporate Swiss Bank accounts. Rusch set up, was sole signatory and was the majority shareholder of the corporation that titled the accounts. In March 2010, a grand jury was convened and over sixty of Mr. Quiel’s business investors were either called to testify or were interviewed. Mr. Quiel was being accused of conspiring to hide money offshore in Swiss Banks to avoid paying taxes, a charge he was later acquitted of. Rusch, the tax expert, bank operator and bank owner expert, initially represented Mr. Quiel in this criminal case which turned out to be an obvious conflict of interest.
The Swiss Bank turned out to be a major swindle. Rusch later admitted that he had not set up the bank properly in Switzerland. Rusch also admitted that none of this was Mr. Quiel’s fault. In a recorded meeting held in January of 2011, Rusch’s exact words were:
Rusch: To be honest, I wasn’t even clear if you had to file one until we were going back to the states, but he (Quiel) wouldn’t know that he needed to file one (FBAR) on UBS unless I told him.
Rusch: Because, as I’ve said, neither of them (Quiel, or his co-defendant) were interacting with the bank, or doing wires, or writing checks, which is how you would usually know that, hey, I’ve got a foreign bank account over which I need to disclose or not.
Attorney: And the reason you didn’t tell him to is that you had — you didn’t know that?
Attorney: And you’re still.. you’re still not convinced that he has to file them?
In 2013, Mr. Quiel’s trial began. Five criminal charges were filed with the court. Filing false tax returns for 2007 and 2008, not filing Foreign Bank Account Reports (FBARs) for foreign bank accounts for 2007 and 2008 and the largest charge of conspiracy, which alone, carried a twenty-year prison sentence.
When the trial started, one of the first things that the government put at the forefront to the jury was the prior audit of having a foreign credit card in 2000 to 2003. The government used this to erroneously prove to the jury that Mr. Quiel had the knowledge to know to file the portion of his tax return Schedule B, Section III and File FBAR forms. Rusch, now lead witness for the government, was the PREPARER that filed these amended tax returns as previously stated. To be clear, at the time of Rusch’s testimony, he was Mr. Quiel’s Tax Attorney; Mr. Quiel’s Tax Preparer; Swiss bank operator of a bank Mr. Quiel’s owned 4% of, Mr. Quiel’s Criminal Attorney; and now LEAD WITNESS for the government against his own client, Michael Quiel.
According to expert sources, it is important to note that a credit card is NOT considered a bank account for foreign reporting purposes. When Rusch amended the tax returns in 2000 to 2003, Mr. Quiel was not required to check the box for a foreign bank account on Schedule B Section III nor was he required to file FBARs for those years.
The forms required to report a foreign bank account on the tax return are on Schedule B Section III, so when Rusch amended the tax returns for the unreported credit card, he was NOT required to check the box on Schedule B Section III or file an FBAR.
In 2013, Rusch took the stand in Mr. Quiel’s criminal trial for the government and unbelievably testified against his client Mr. Quiel. Prosecuting attorney Monica Edelstein questioned Rusch on the stand. In order to prove Mr. Quiel’s willful intent, the government brought the prior audit of the Belize credit card income up to the jury. Then Prosecutor Monica Edelstein questioned Rusch about the prior audit in 2000 to 2003. Edelstein specifically questioned Rusch about when he prepared the amended 2000-2003 tax returns, specifically how he amended Schedule B Section III, and whether Rusch had filed FBAR forms. Rusch stated that he did prepare and file those forms, checked the box on Schedule B, Section III and filed FBARS.
On day eight of trial, here is Rusch‘s actual testimony:
Edelstein: “Did those amended returns reflect the existence of a foreign bank account on Schedule B as required?”
Rusch: “Yes, it did. I prepared them and signed them, sent them to Mr. Quiel for his signature, and he forwarded them on to the agent assigned to the case.”
Edelstein: “And were there any FBARs or reports of foreign bank accounts that were also disclosed to the auditor?”
Rusch: “Yes, they — yes.”
Edelstein: “And I guess by “disclosed,” did you prepare them?”
Edelstein: “And how did you prepare those FBARS?”
Rusch: “Based on the bank account statements received by Mr. Quiel I filled in the bank name, bank address, highest balance on the account, and then sent them to Mr. Quiel.”
Edelstein: “And was just the Belize account reflected on the FBAR?”
Rusch: “Yes, it was.”
At trial, IRS Agent Cheryl Bradley took the stand and also “gave perjured testimony” that her audit concluded that years 2000-2003 had the box checked on Schedule B, Section III and also confirmed FBARs were filed for those tax years.
At this point it would seem like Mr. Quiel’s defense attorney would have easily uncovered this perjured testimony with the 2000-2003 tax forms showing the box was NOT CHECKED and that FBARs were not filed, but the evidence was purposely hidden from the jury. You see the IRS/DOJ refused to release Quiel’s 2000-2003 tax returns to create their perfect narrative for conviction. All the while, the truth was all contained in Mr. Quiel’s IRS IMF and the defense never got to see it.
It is important to explain what an IRS Internal Master File is. An IMF is a file held on each taxpayer that holds all information on that taxpayer and the tax returns and forms that they file. If Mr. Quiel would have had access to his IMF file, it would have been easy to prove the obvious lie that Rusch, Bradley and Edelstein where concocting.
Mr. Quiel’s IMF file containing all the tax forms from 2000 to 2003, which were requested by Mr. Quiel’s defense counsel PRIOR to trial, were all withheld. The government simply refused to comply. During trial Mr. Quiel requested his IMF file be entered into evidence. Federal Judge James A. Teilborg denied Mr. Quiel’s access to his file but allowed the government to extract one page of the file and introduce it as damning evidence against Mr. Quiel. Mr. Quiel’s defense attorney objected but Judge Teilborg would not uphold the objection. For the second time, on day eight of trial, Mr. Quiel’s defense attorney requested Judge Teilborg compel the government to give the Defense access to Mr. Quiel’s IMF file. Again, Mr. Quiel was denied access.
What is amazing is that the criminal rules in federal court say that the defendant should have access to 100% of any information that assists in an accused person’s defense. In this case, Prosecutor Edelstein and Judge Teilborg purposely withheld the IMF file that contained the information that would incriminate Rusch and Bradley and exonerate Mr. Quiel.
The result of the jury never seeing Quiel’s IMF was a guilty verdict on the charge of filing false tax returns for 2007 and 2008. Quiel was found innocent on all the other charges – where he was able to provide all his evidence.
For many years after the trial, Mr. Quiel tried to obtain his IMF file. Mr. Quiel sent many Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests. All FOIA requests were ignored or denied. Mr. Quiel even filed another post-conviction motion and requested Judge Teilborg compel the IRS to deliver Mr. Quiel’s IMF file and again Teilborg denied the motion.
Years later, the criminal case concluded, and all criminal appeals were finalized by 2020. The government has now brought a Civil case against Mr. Quiel. The DOJ/IRS wasn’t satisfied with falsely convicting Quiel they now want to destroy Mr. Quiel financially.
Thanks to Mr. Quiel’s tenacious civil attorney he was finally able to obtain a copy of his IMF file in March of 2020. Within the file was the proof that Edelstein, Rusch and Bradley had all conspired to concoct the testimony of lies that Mr. Quiel knew how to file Schedule B Section III and an FBAR form.
The tax forms from the audit in 2000 to 2003 that Rusch prepared, and Bradley audited did NOT have the box checked on Schedule B, Section III nor did they include the FBARs that Rusch and Bradley both testified existed – ethical people consider this perjury.
US District Judge Teilborg is complicit in this conspiracy for the pure fact that he denied Mr. Quiel access to his IMF file during trial. Judge Teilborg had an opportunity to produce it after trial when it was requested but he denied Mr. Quiel all access to the evidence that would have exonerated him.
Judge Teilborg’s final order issued September 14th, 2018, states the following:
“Petitioner fails to adequately justify why he could not have learned that the IRS refused to turn over this information prior to his appeal. His conclusion that he could not have learned of this information, because “IRS Criminal Investigations” was blocking his access to the FBARs, misses the mark. If he had asked for the FBARs prior to appeal, and had received them, then he would have evidence that they do exist, and would have no basis to claim that Rusch and Bradley perjured themselves.”
Mr. Quiel requested his IMF file prior to trial, during trial (it is in the transcript), and after trial. Again, US District Judge Teilborg had an opportunity to produce it during and after trial when it was requested but again and again he denied Mr. Quiel all access to this crucial exculpatory evidence.
With this indisputable evidence that the government hid the IMF file which contained the lack of FBAR’s, these co-conspirators all continue their careers while Mr. Quiel continues to fight. Mr. Quiel was sent to prison for 10 months and has spent millions of dollars for his defense and is now facing civil fines and penalties in the amount of $2.1 million for a FBAR fine.
Three New Co-Conspirators, Butler, Hubbert and Uhalde, Attack Quiel Civilly
David Hubbert Acting US Assistant Attorney General, Charles Butler U.S Department of Justice Trial Attorney and Matthew Uhalde U.S. Department of Justice Trial Attorney are now coming after Quiel in civil court to collect the government’s FBAR fine of $2.1 Million.
Butler, Hubbert and Uhalde are attempting to use the exact same evidence that was lied about in 2013. The only difference is Mr. Quiel has his IMF file to prove his innocence. These new conspirators at the IRS DOJ surely know that their case is based on the same lies that got Quiel convicted in the first place. Butler, Hubbert and Uhalde are EXPERTS and know the tax forms and how Edlestein, Rusch and Bradley “perjured themselves” as they can now look at the evidence that the FBARS do not exist and the boxes on the tax forms were not checked, which completely exonerates Quiel and indicts Rusch, Edelstein, Bradley and deservedly Judge Teilborg himself. All three have complete access to the transcript from the 2013 trial, they have access to the IMF file and now know that Judge Teilborg purposely and willfully assisted the IRS/DOJ in the conspiracy of hiding the evidence.
Remember, the jury found Quiel INNOCENT of conspiracy at trial.
Any prudent person must easily recognize the government does not care about the facts. It will be interesting to see how the government will create new evidence and lies in an attempt to destroy Mr. Quiel financially. They will probably create a bunch of procedural, confusing attorney-language like Judge Teilborg did in order to bury his own lies.
Editor’s Note: At the end of the day, Michael Quiel was acquitted on all criminal charges except filing a false tax return. It is now up to newly appointed US Attorney Gary Restaino to serve justice…
Anyone with information on Christian Reeves (the alias for Christopher Rusch) or any of his co-conspirators listed above should call the US~Observer at 541-474-7885 or send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.