NEW ORLEANS — A federal judge Wednesday threw out one of the 11 tax fraud charges against Jason Williams and his law partner Nicole Burdett.
The dismissal of one count of failing to file taxes on legal fees collected by Williams had been requested by the government based on information provided by defense attorneys. The charge was related to the receipt of $10,500 in legal fees in January 2018.
The dismissal leaves four similar counts. Legal observers consider those counts among the more problematic for Williams and Burdett because they don’t involve Westwego tax preparer Henry Timothy, expected to be a critical – but tainted – prosecution witness. Timothy prepared taxes for Williams and his law office, but has since pleaded guilty to cheating on his own taxes, a fact that is expected to be used by defense attorneys to discredit him.
In the main conspiracy count against Williams and Burdett, the government accuses them of inflating their business deductions by more than $700,000, reducing their tax liability by more than $200,000.
The trial before U.S. District Judge Lance Africk is scheduled to start on July 18.