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Motor Fuel Tax Fugitive Sentenced to 43 months in Jail and $1 Million Restitution

On July 31, Aaron Misulovin, the former operator of Kings Motor Oils (Kings), was sentenced in U.S. District Court, Camden, New Jersey, to 43 months incarceration and $ 1 million restitution for crimes related to the evasion of motor fuel excise taxes. Mr. Misulovin was indicted on motor fuel tax evasion charges in 1995, but fled prior to prosecution. On February 27, 2009, after being a fugitive for 13 years, he pled guilty to numerous criminal charges. The 1995 indictment charged Mr. Misulovin and twenty–four (24) other defendants with approximately $138 million in evaded federal and New Jersey state motor fuel excise taxes. The federal motor fuel taxes fund the Department of Transportation’s Highway Trust Fund. In addition, the indictment charged each individual, including Mr. Misulovin, with substantive offenses of wire fraud, money laundering, and tax evasion. Mr. Misulovin operated Kings, a wholesale fuel distributorship. According to the indictment, Kings purchased hundreds of millions of gallons of tax–free home heating oil, but through an elaborate scheme the fuel was re–sold by a wholesaler as diesel fuel for highway use, with Federal and state taxes being charged and collected from unknowing customers. Instead of remitting payment to the IRS and the state, the taxes were distributed among Misulovin and other conspirators. Mr. Misulovin and the other tax evaders insulated themselves by creating “shell companies” and made it appear as though these sham entities bought and sold the fuel. In reality, these companies never took title or possession of the fuel and Mr. Misulovin created false invoices and other documents to disguise the transactions between wholesale fuel distributorship and fuel wholesaler.