Fernando Hernandez is a 33-year-old Internal Revenue Service employee working out of the Dallas office. Only, today he's in federal custody after having been arrested by federal authorities, who dropped by Friday morning following a Dallas federal grand jury's decision to indict Hernandez for just offering to help out a poor soul who didn't want the IRS peeking at his tax return. Oh, can you hear the drums, Fernando?
The indictment charges Hernandez with one count of receiving a bribe by a public official and aiding and abetting. It alleges that in June 2005, Hernandez sought and accepted a $2000 cash payment from a U.S. taxpayer in return for Hernandez' promise that he would ensure that no IRS representative would audit that taxpayer's return.
An indictment is an accusation by a federal grand jury and a defendant is entitled to the presumption of innocence unless proven guilty. However, if convicted, Hernandez faces a maximum statutory sentence of 15 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.