A federal judge this morning sentenced a former owner of San Antonio-based Gourmet Express, LLC, a skillet meals manufacturing and distributing business, to 15 years in federal prison for his role in an estimated $5.3 million tax and wire fraud scheme announced United States Attorney Richard L. Durbin, Jr., and Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge William Cotter.
In addition to the prison term, United States District Judge David A. Ezra ordered that Robert Warren Scully pay $1,206,539.94 restitution to the Internal Revenue Service, plus a $5,000 fine, and be placed on supervised release for a period of three years after completing his prison term. Judge Ezra also ordered that the defendant be taken into custody to begin serving his sentence immediately.
On November 25, 2015, a federal jury in San Antonio convicted Scully of conspiracy to defraud the United States, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and three substantive wire fraud counts.
Evidence presented in trial revealed that from April 2001 until July 2009, Scully and others conspired to defraud the Internal Revenue Service by hiding earned taxable income generated by his frozen food business. Testimony revealed that Scully and others used intermediary companies in Thailand to provide shrimp and other ingredients at an inflated cost to Gourmet Express, thereby also defrauding his co-owners. Scully and others used the proceeds generated as a result of the inflated costs for personal expenses and failed to disclose that income to the Internal Revenue Service.
“Robert Scully used a tangled web of international entities and foreign bank accounts to divert money from his business and evade income taxes,” said IRS Criminal Investigation Acting Special Agent in Charge Troy Caldron. “Scully must now pay for his attempt to support a lavish lifestyle through fraudulent means. Money laundering and tax evasion are not victimless crimes. They constitute a serious threat to our communities, to the integrity of our financial system, and to our national security.”
The case resulted from an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation. Assistant United States Attorneys William R. Harris, Jay Hulings and Mary Nelda Valadez prosecuted this case on behalf of the Government.