SAN DIEGO (CNS) – A San Diego attorney pleaded guilty Wednesday to federal charges stemming from a tax fraud scheme orchestrated by former Chabad of Poway Rabbi Yisroel Goldstein.
Elliot Adler, 45, admitted to taking part in what prosecutors have termed the “90/10” scheme, in which Goldstein accepted charitable donations, then would send about 90% of the funds back to the donors, while pocketing the remainder for himself.
Donors would then falsely claim on tax forms that 100% of their donations went to the Chabad, with Goldstein providing the false donors with fake receipts.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office said Adler was a purported donor from at least 2010 until 2018, allowing him to reduce his personal income tax liability by about $500,000.
Prosecutors allege the men conducted their transactions over text messages in coded language in order to conceal the nature of their communications.
In 2020, Goldstein pleaded guilty to fraud charges and was sentenced earlier this year to 14 months in prison.
Adler, who’s slated for sentencing in July, is the 11th person to plead guilty, while two others agreed to deferred prosecution agreements, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
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