Acting U.S. Attorney Rick A. Mountcastle announced Monday five Max Meadows, Virginia residents were sentenced on federal conspiracy charges.
The defendants named in the case include:
- Forty-six-year-old Gary Daniel Musick
- Sixty-eight-year-old Larry Dean Ball
- Eighty-year-old Harold Hart
- Forty-two-year-old Katrina Rose Freeman
- Sixty-seven-year-old Mary Carroll Ball
All five defendants skimmed more than $1 million from the Old Fort Western Store in Wythe County. The defendants pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud and impair and obstruct the lawful function of the Internal Revenue Service, according to court documents. They also paid more than $440,000 in federal taxes, penalties and interest, more than $100,000 in evaded state taxes, penalties and interest and a forfeiture of more than $29,000, according to court documents.
While executing search warrants, the United States seized more than $275,000 in cash from the defendants.
Larry and Hart ball opened the Old Fort Western Store in the 1990s. Ownership was transferred to Freeman, Musick and one other person in 2009. Hart is Freeman’s grandfather and Larry Ball’s stepfather. Larry and Mary Ball are Freeman’s parents, according to court records.
Musick, Freeman, Hart and Larry and Mary ball all agreed to skim cash from income of Old Fort to avoid paying sales tax on that money beginning in 2010. They skimmed cash was utilized to pay Old Fort rent, employee payroll and their regular paychecks. The remainder was split between the five defendants.
The defendants skimmed $1,121,458 in cash from Old Fort between 2010 and 2016.
Musick was sentenced to 18 months in prison and ordered to pay a $10,000 fine, Larry Ball was sentenced to 12 months and 1 day in prison and ordered to pay $10,000, Hart was sentenced to 24 months probation and ordered to pay $55,000, Freeman was sentenced to 24 months probation and ordered to pay a $10,000 fine and Mary Ball was sentenced to 24 months in prison and ordered to pay a $5,500 fine.