PHILADELPHIA – United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Rosezanna Czwalina, 70, of, of Morton, PA, was sentenced to one year in prison, one year supervised release, and was ordered to pay $112,846 restitution by United States District Court Judge Paul S. Diamond for committing tax fraud.
In June 2021, the defendant pleaded guilty to five counts of filing materially false tax returns in connection with her efforts to avoid paying her duly owed tax obligations. Czwalina, who had been the elected tax collector and treasurer for Ridley Township, Delaware County, PA from 2009 until her resignation in 2021, was authorized to retain, as a supplement to her income, fees paid for tax certifications and generation of duplicate tax bills. However, the defendant failed to report those retained fees as income on her federal income tax returns for the years 2014 through 2018.
“The American tax system provides government services critical to our people,” said U.S. Attorney Williams. “Every time someone cheats the tax system, the burden of providing vital services increases on taxpayers who pay their fair share. As an elected official responsible for collecting taxes and managing public money, this defendant knew what her obligations were and willfully chose to ignore them.”
“As the township’s own tax collector, Czwalina well knew the importance of tax revenue to the proper functioning of government,” said Jacqueline Maguire, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Philadelphia Division. “And yet, for years, she knowingly shorted the federal system and its taxpayers by failing to report her true income. Elected officials must be held to the highest of ethical standards and when their actions cross into criminality, the FBI and our partners won’t hesitate to investigate and hold them properly accountable.”
“Honest taxpayers are fed up with the likes of Czwalina, who knowingly disregarded her legal duty to pay her fair share of taxes year after year,” said IRS Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge Yury Kruty. “It is our hope that the sentence she received would deter would-be tax cheats.”
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Internal Revenue Service and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney K.T. Newton.