Landscape contractor accused of tax fraud

By Mary Elizabeth Williams-Villano

He could face a lengthy prison term plus fines.

A Florida landscape company owner has discovered the hard way that it doesn’t pay to cheat on your taxes. A story by Sara Marino posted on the Treasure Coast Newspapers website cites a Department of Justice news release stating that Joseph J. Ferry III, who owns Ferry Enterprises Inc., was charged with five counts of filing false corporate income tax returns and five counts of filing false individual federal income tax returns.

The owner of the Stuart-based commercial and residential landscaping company is accused of having withdrawn more than $2.9 million in cash from his business' account to pay for home renovations, jewelry and other items.

If found guilty, Ferry could be sentenced to three years in prison for each count as well as face fines.