- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 9, 2019

An IRS agent tried to demand a bribe from a taxpayer earlier this month, promising to cut $23,000 off his bill if he agreed to pay her $5,000, prosecutors charged in documents filed Thursday.

They said Felecia Edna Taylor, a 29-year veteran of the tax agency in Long Beach, California, was caught on tape Tuesday accepting the bribe, paid in $100 bills that IRS investigators supplied to the man after he alerted them to the scam.

The man, identified only by the initials S.W. in the documents, said he went into the office owing $33,000 and offered to cut the bill to just $10,000 should he pony up.

The charging documents included a still photo from undercover video showing Ms. Taylor holding up five fingers — which an inspector general investigator said was her verifying the payment.

“It was very clear to me that Agent Taylor was inviting a bribe from me in order to reduce the potential audit assessment,” S.W. said in a declaration filed in the case.

Also included in the case files were S.W.’s notes he took at a meeting late last month with Ms. Taylor, where they reviewed his 2017 taxes.

He said she refused to look at his supporting documents he’d brought to justify his deductions, and so he began to pack up his papers. She walked him out the door and to his car, where she told him she could help.

She made an initial offer to lower his bill by about $5,000 for a payment of $3,500, and he said he worked her down to a $10,000 bill in exchange for paying her the $5,000.

“She then stated that this need [sic] to be unmarked bills and to use one of the envelopes she had mailed to me in the past with the reports,” he recounted in his notes.

The photos from the undercover video show a large woman wearing a cap sitting at a cubicle desk, holding the envelope which investigators had filled with the $100 bills.

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