Criminal Justice

Former general counsel failed to file federal tax returns while earning $54M, he admits in guilty plea

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John Goggins, 63, of Chatham, New Jersey, has been accused of failing to file tax returns for the tax years 2018 through 2021. (Image from Shutterstock)

The former general counsel for the Moody’s Corp. pleaded guilty last week to willfully failing to pay tax returns during a four-year period in which he earned $54 million in total gross income.

John Goggins, 63, of Chatham, New Jersey, pleaded guilty April 25, according to an April 26 press release.

Law360, Bloomberg Law and Reuters have coverage.

Goggins was accused of failing to file tax returns for the tax years 2018 through 2021. During that time, he earned $54 million from wages, stock awards, stock options, interest, dividends and gains from stock sales, federal prosecutors say.

Goggins was represented by Christopher Ferguson, who provided a statement to the publications that covered the guilty plea.

Law360 is among the publications that published the statement.

“Mr. Goggins deeply regrets and has accepted full responsibility for his failure to file certain personal income tax returns,” the statement said. “This is a personal matter that has nothing to do with his work at Moody’s. Mr. Goggins has paid the outstanding taxes, interest and penalties due in connection with his misdemeanor offenses and looks forward to putting this situation behind him.”

“Much of the taxes associated with Mr. Goggins’ income were withheld at the source and timely remitted to the IRS,” the statement continued. “He has been working with tax professionals to ensure that he remains in full compliance with his tax obligations.”

The maximum penalty for each count of willful failure to file tax returns is one year in prison and a $100,000 fine or twice the gross gain or loss from the offense. Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 6.

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