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Pelletizer company owner sentenced to prison for tax evasion

By: Frank Antosiewicz

June 24, 2013

David Toppin, the owner and operator of Pelletizer Group Inc., was sentenced to three years in prison and ordered to pay $716,479 in restitution for failure to pay income taxes, according to court records.

Toppin, 47, of Holden, Mass., was convicted in a five-day January jury trial, but his sentencing was postponed so the judge could hear motions for acquittal and a request a new trial. Those motions were denied, and Toppin was sentenced on June 19 by U.S. District Judge Timothy Hillman in Worcester, Mass.

Toppin also faces two years of supervised release after completion of his jail term.

Toppin was charged with not filing tax returns for 1997-1999. When he did file those returns, in 2006, the returns showed an adjusted income of $727,701, and Toppin reported that he owed $227,199 in federal income tax.

The office of District Attorney Carmen Ortiz said in a news release that evidence at the trial showed that Toppin evaded paying taxes and tried to prevent collection by placing real estate and a checking account in his wife's name.

He faced a maximum sentence of five years.

Toppin said in a May email to Plastics News that the prosecutors had to prove an "intentional violation of a known legal duty," and that he did not have to pay taxes on money earned in the private sector.

Pelletizer Group, located in Gardner, Mass., supplies replacement pelletizer parts.