A federal grand jury in Anchorage indicted a Kenai man last Wednesday for tax evasion and filing false documents.
Michael A. Spisak faces one count of tax evasion for allegedly transferring assets, including airplanes and property, to other people in an attempt to conceal his true income from the Internal Revenue Service.
According the indictment, Spisak is a commercial pilot who has worked as a hunting and fishing guide since the 1980s, operating his business under several different names including Bellair, Inc., TransNorthern Aviation, Ram Aviation, Northern Aircraft Leasing LLC, and Hunt and Fish Alaska LLC. The indictment charges that payroll taxes from some of these businesses were not paid to the IRS, and that in 2004, the IRS slapped Spisak with over $200,000 in penalties for failing to pay said taxes.
Instead of paying the penalties, the indictment says, Spisak spent the next six years transferring aircraft, property, and money to other people, including his then-girlfriend and wife, now ex-wife, identified as K.D. in the indictment. He is also alleged to have used others, including K.D., to buy more planes and open more bank accounts in their names instead of his.
The indictment outlines the convoluted methods Spisak allegedly used to hide his income from the IRS, including opening businesses in Wyoming and Nevada, opening bank accounts in Arizona and Oklahoma, and transferring money from his account to an account held jointly by Spisak’s daughter and son-in-law.
In February 2007, Spisak submitted an Offer in Compromise to the IRS through a revenue officer in Alaska to settle his $200,000 tax debt for $1,000. Spisak said there was a “Doubt as to Collectibility” for his tax liability because he claimed to have minimal income and assets.
Meanwhile hundreds of thousands of dollars continued circulating through the various accounts and businesses Spisak — or other parties acting at Spisak’s direction — had created.
Spisak owned property on Kalifornsky Beach Road in Kenai, Kasilof Boulevard in Anchorage, and Paradise Lane in Nikiski.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Retta Randall presented the case the grand jury. She said that under U.S. law, Spisak faces a maximum total sentence of five years in prison, a $250,000 fine, or both if found guilty. Prior criminal history and other mitigating or aggravating factors could affect the actual sentence, however.
Randall said Spisak has been served with a summons to appear in court on Aug. 3 for his arraignment.