Maine Lawyer Sentenced to 30 Days in Jail for Failure to File Income Taxes

January 8, 2010


Contact: Leanne Robbin,
Assistant Attorney General (207) 751-2961

Alfred?Attorney General Janet Mills announced today that Stephen M. Brett, age 50, of York Beach, Maine has been sentenced by Justice Arthur Brennan in York County Superior Court to 30 days in jail for failing to file his state income tax returns for 2004, 2005 and 2006. Brett also pled no contest to a charge that he had commingled $3,625 entrusted to him in a real estate closing with his personal funds and used the money for personal purposes. He has also been placed on a deferred disposition following his plea of no contest to a charge of misuse of entrusted property.

Under the terms of the deferred disposition, he will pay restitution of $611 and file his outstanding state tax returns by April 15, 2010. If Brett compiles with the terms, the state will permit him to withdraw his no contest guilty plea and will dismiss the charge of misuse of entrusted property. Prior to the indictment, he had already repaid the $3,625. He will also be required to pay restitution for unpaid taxes and interest up to $3,315.

The charges all arose from a time when Brett was practicing as an attorney. Brett?s law license is currently under suspension.

Brett will report to jail on February 19, 2010.

Assistant Attorney General Leanne Robbin said, ?Attorneys are well aware of their obligation to pay their share of taxes. There is no excuse for an attorney who fails to fulfill that responsibility.?

Attorney General Mills would like to thank Assistant Attorney General Leanne Robbin for her excellent work on the case and thanks the Criminal Investigations Unit of Maine Revenue Services for their investigation.