PORTLAND — A Greene man who told authorities in 2010 he would rather go to jail than allow the Internal Revenue Service to seize his forklift to pay back taxes pleaded guilty Thursday in U.S. District Court to hiding the forklift before it could be towed away.
True to his word, 32-year-old Patrick Doyon now faces up to two years in jail on a charge of forcible rescue of seized property. His sentencing hearing is scheduled for Nov. 25.
Doyon, who worked in the construction industry, owed more than $37,000 in back taxes on Aug. 4, 2010, when an IRS revenue officer went to his home and taped seizure warning cards on the cab of the JBC Loadall 508C forklift, seized the keys and put a seizure warning sticker over the ignition, according to court records.
When the IRS revenue officer returned the next day to have the construction-grade forklift removed, it was already gone.
Doyon told two IRS special agents who interviewed him in September 2010 that he knew the location of the forklift but would not tell them where it was, prosecutors said in court records.
“He stated that the IRS can put him in jail, but he is not disclosing the whereabout of the Loadall,” Assistant U.S. Attorney James Chapman Jr. said in a court document.
Doyon told the federal agents that the forklift was worth $80,000 and that authorities would only be able to fetch $10,000 for it at auction, according to the court papers.
The IRS never located the forklift.
This story was updated at 4:32 p.m. Aug. 2 to correct James Chapman Jr.’s title.