Michael Eric Stewart, 73, formerly of Maui, Hawaii, was sentenced to 24 months in prison in federal court for six years of tax evasion, from 2001 to 2006. Chief United States District Judge Susan Oki Mollway also ordered that Stewart pay restitution of $476,265 to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
Stewart, owner and operator of Infinity Mortgage on Maui, earned income from soliciting mortgage loans from 2001-2006, but did not file tax returns from 1997 through 2006 until August 2007. Court documents further reflect that the IRS asserted that Stewart owed a total of $476,265 in taxes for those years.
The indictment alleged that Stewart transferred income earned through his mortgage business into the bank account of a nominee entity Stewart established in Nevada. The indictment also alleged that from 2001 to 2006, Stewart transferred $788,000 into the Nevada entity’s bank account, eventually transferring over $345,000 into his Hawaii bank account, from which, according to the plea agreement, he wrote checks totaling $280,000 payable to himself or cash. According to the indictment, Steward moved to Panama City, Panama in 2008.
Florence T. Nakakuni, United States Attorney for the District of Hawaii, announced the sentence.
The case resulted from an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation. The prosecution was handled by Assistant United States Attorney Kenneth M. Sorenson.