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Feds: Passaic County Union Plan Admin Charged In Tax Evasion Kickback Scheme

US Attorneys Office
US Attorneys Office Photo Credit: US Justice Department

A Passaic County man working as a union health plan administrator is facing federal charges for his role in a kickback tax evasion scheme, authorities said.

Jose Santa Maria, aka “Joe,” of North Haledon, served as a plan admin through a health and training fund-related company that provided admin services to a labor union, Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig said.

Between 2013 and 2019, he failed to report his $750,000 earned from "Company-1" to the IRS, and failed to pay the associated income taxes, court papers say.

Santa Maria also paid $50,000 to an unnamed individual in order to keep his positions as the plan administrator to the funds and company vice president, according to court documents.

The company received insurance commissions -- which Santa Maria did not report -- on filings with the IRS and Department of Labor for the union health fund, authorities said.

Santa Maria was charged by complaint with five counts of tax evasion, one count of paying kickbacks related to an employee benefit plan, and one count of making false statements in relation to an employee benefit plan. 

He appeared by videoconference Thursday before U.S. Magistrate Judge James B. Clark III.

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