News Release
For Immediate Release:
February 03, 2009
Contact: Special Agent Tony Pettigrew
Number: 617-557-2138

Local Member of Hells Angels Motorcycle Club Sentenced to One Year in Prison on Tax Charges

FEB 03 -- BOSTON, MA - A Lynn man was sentenced today in federal court for intentionally failing to file federal income tax returns for tax years 2005 and 2006.

Steven W. Derr, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration, United States Attorney Michael J. Sullivan and JoAnn Zuniga, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigations - Boston Field Office, announced today that CHRISTOPHER RANIERI, age 40, of Lynn, Massachusetts, was sentenced today by U.S. Magistrate Judge Leo T. Sorokin to twelve months imprisonment and restitution to the U.S. Treasury in the amount of $33,438.00

On December 8, 2008, RANIERI pled guilty to two counts of failure to file federal income tax returns. At the earlier plea hearing, the prosecutor told the Court that had the case proceeded to trial the Government’s evidence would have proven that, as part of a larger investigation of local chapters of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club, starting in January 2007 the Government initiated a financial investigation of RANIERI and others. The investigation revealed that, for tax years 2005 and 2006, RANIERI failed to file personal income tax returns despite having sufficient taxable income in those years. RANIERI filed returns in 2001 – 2004 but, corresponding to a significant increase in income earned from certain real estate transactions, RANIERI filed no returns the following two years. After executing a search warrant at RANIERI’s home on September 20, 2007, federal agents found various tax forms as well as an article that attempted to justify, on legal and philosophical grounds, a U.S. citizen refusing to pay federal income taxes.

The case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigations; the Drug Enforcement Administration; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; Massachusetts State Police; Lynn Police Department; and the Gloucester Police Department.