NEVADA – Benzer, accused in HOA scheme, indicted on tax evasion charges
The accused mastermind of a massive scheme to take over homeowners associations was indicted by a Las Vegas federal grand jury Tuesday on charges of evading roughly $1.2 million in personal and company taxes. Leon Benzer, 46, a former construction company boss, is facing two counts of tax evasion and is being summoned to make an initial appearance on the charges later this month. He is accused of not paying the Internal Revenue Service $459,204 in personal taxes owed between 2001 and 2005, as well as $705,982 in employment and unemployment taxes between 2003 and 2004. The charges relate directly to Benzer’s alleged leading role in the scheme to take over 11 homeowners associations across the valley between 2003 and 2009.
Benzer used some of the $7.2 million in construction defect funds his company, Silver Lining Construction, received from the Vistana homeowners association for his personal use, the indictment alleges. He is accused of filing false financial forms with the IRS to conceal money and assets. Benzer and 10 others were indicted in January in the Justice Department’s final push to charge conspirators in the homeowners association corruption scheme. They are to stand trial March 3. Read more: