30 August – LAWFUEL – The Law News Network – A Rancho Cucamonga attorney was sentenced today to 81 months in federal prison for impersonating a federal agent, carrying a gun onto an airplane, making a false statement to the government, tax evasion, making a false statement in a loan application and witness tampering.
James Davis, 51, was sentenced this morning by United States District Judge R. Gary Klausner. The sentence was the result of two separate criminal cases that led to two separate trials and convictions.
For the crimes of tax evasion, witness tampering and false statement in a loan application, Davis was sentenced to 63 months in prison. In addition to the prison term, Judge Klausner ordered Davis to pay $362,628 to the Internal Revenue Service, $40,000 restitution to Bank Of America and a $10,000 fine. For impersonating a federal employee, boarding a plane with a gun and making a making a false statement to the government, Davis was sentenced to 18 months in prison and ordered to pay a $4,000 fine. Judge Klausner ordered that the two sentences run consecutively, which resulted in an 81-month sentence.
Davis has been in custody since April 28, 2005, when he was remanded after being found guilty in the tax evasion case. The evidence presented during a three-day bench trial showed that Davis earned more than $1 million in taxable income from his law practice, James Davis and Associates, and owed more than $360,000 in federal income taxes. Davis failed to file income tax returns for the years 1999, 2000 and 2001, during which he failed to pay any federal income tax.
Davis attempted to conceal his income from the IRS by creating a bogus non-profit corporation, the California Fire Marshal Officer’s Association, which he used to conceal income from his law practice and to pay his employees and personal expenses.
The false statement charge in the tax case relates to a loan application Davis made, in which he applied for and obtained a loan for his bogus non-profit. In the application, he falsely claimed that the association had income of $400,000.
The IRS executed search warrants on Davis’s residence and business on July 16, 2002. After the IRS executed the warrants, Davis sent threatening letters to various individuals who had information relevant to the IRS’s investigation. The letters accused those individuals of filing “false reports with the IRS” and threatened a multi-million dollar lawsuit against them. Davis also threatened to file criminal reports against these individuals naming them as “suspects” and created a website offering a “$10,000 reward for the arrest and conviction” of these individuals.
The second case concluded when a jury in February 2005 convicted Davis of boarding an airplane with a handgun, impersonation of a government agent and false statements in an FAA security form. The evidence at this trial showed that on June 28, 2002, Davis attempted to board an airplane at Ontario International Airport with a concealed loaded handgun. Prior to boarding the plane, Davis filled out and signed a “Notice to Armed Individuals” form in which he falsely represented that he was authorized by the United States Customs Service to fly armed and that he met all the FAA regulations in order to fly armed. After Davis told the crew that he was an “air marshal,” a suspicious pilot questioned Davis, who eventually produced identification issued by the Civil Air Patrol, a volunteer agency whose members are not law enforcement officers.
On April 5, 2003, Davis falsely pretended to be a Homeland Security employee in order to purchase airline tickets from Southwest Airlines at a discounted federal government rate. Before being arrested at John Wayne Airport, Davis claimed to work for the Department of Homeland Security and offered to pay with a check purportedly from the “U.S. Homeland Security Center.”
The cases against Davis are the result of an investigation by IRS-Criminal Investigation Division and the Department of Homeland Security, Office of Inspector General.