NEW YORK, Sept. 28, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- In a landmark verdict on Thursday, September 23, 2021, a Lexington Kentucky federal jury acquitted former National Basketball Association player Randolph Morris on 11 counts of criminal tax violations. Morris was charged with 8 counts of failing to report to the IRS income earned in the China Basketball Association, as well as 3 counts for failure to report this income on his State of Kentucky tax returns. Morris had played for 8 years with the Beijing Ducks, from 2010 through 2017, winning 3 championship titles during that time and once being honored as Championship Finals Most Valuable Player.
Morris' lead attorney, Patrick A. Mullin, a veteran federal criminal tax defense attorney, noted that the Lexington federal jury needed only 2.5 hours to enter its not guilty verdict on all 11 counts, making this full acquittal all the more remarkable. Mr. Mullin stated that this speedy verdict should send a loud and clear message to the IRS that it cannot trample upon citizens' rights and must exercise much greater consideration before utilizing its vast powers to pursue criminal charges against law-abiding citizens such as Morris.
According to the IRS 2020 fiscal year statistics, more than 90.4% of IRS prosecutions result in conviction, and according to a 2019 Pew Research study, federal prosecutors obtain convictions in 99.6% of all federal criminal cases, which emphasizes how extremely rare it is for a defendant, such as Morris, to obtain a full acquittal.
Mr. Mullin noted that the Beijing team had paid the equivalent of more than $6.6 million American dollars in payroll taxes for Morris, yet the IRS still decided to pursue criminal charges against him. Among other IRS tactics, two agents came to Morris' home unannounced while he was in China and interrogated Morris by telephone as well as interrogating his wife in their home. Mr. Mullin stated that it is incumbent upon the U.S. Department of Justice to put its foot down and prohibit such flagrant invasions of privacy by the IRS.
Earlier this year, Mr. Mullin secured, in a separate matter, a reversal from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and release from detention for a 19-year-old defendant being held without bail. In 2012, Mr. Mullin secured a full acquittal as to federal tax charges brought against a New Jersey businessman. In 2011, Mullin secured full dismissal of a 6-count federal indictment against a defense contractor charged with procurement fraud as a separate corporate plea, without jail time, was entered based upon key employee misconduct. In 2007, Mr. Mullin secured a full jury acquittal on 10 counts brought by the DEA's Diversion Unit against a physician, marking its first full major reported defeat at that time.
With offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., and Fort Lee, New Jersey, Mr. Mullin concentrates in complex tax defense and federal criminal defense matters. He has argued before the United States Supreme Court in a major federal criminal sentencing matter and is the recipient of numerous professional accolades, including being named a 2022 Lawyer of the Year for Criminal Defense, White Collar by Best Lawyers in America.
SOURCE Law Offices of Patrick A. Mullin