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A Salt Lake County dentist was sent to prison for tax evasion after he failed to complete probation.
Benjamin Lee Gilstrap, 60, was ordered Monday to serve up to five years in prison after he failed to repay $242,237 in back taxes, according to a press release by the Utah Attorney General's Office.
Gilstrap was originally charged with five third-degree felony counts of tax evasion; and four counts of intent to defeat the payment of a tax, attempted tax evasion, and pattern of unlawful activity, all second-degree felonies, court records indicate. The Utah Tax Commission alleged Gilstrap filed no tax returns for his Sandy dental practice from 2003 to 2007, when he earned nearly $1.5 million.
As part of a plea bargain in 2011, he pleaded guilty to tax evasion and attempted tax evasion, third-degree felonies, and agreed to pay full restitution. Tax Commission investigators said Gilstrap was charged for violations during just a five-year period, but they found he failed to file tax returns as far back as commission records are kept.
"Justice may have been slow but it finally caught up with Mr. Gilstrap," says Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff.