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Tax evader gets 15 months

TAMPA - A U.S. district judge sentenced Howard Lee McCauley to 15 months in prison on Thursday for failing to pay three-quarters of a million dollars of income taxes.

McCauley, who used to live in Dunedin, pleaded guilty to one count of income tax evasion Nov. 30, 2004. He was an independent financial planner who owned M&A Financial and used Raymond James Financial to process his transactions. In 1997, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office, McCauley listed all of the income he earned from commissions in a series of domestic and foreign trusts that he controlled.

He filed personal income tax returns, which reflected only part of his true income, federal officials said. But Internal Revenue Service criminal investigators learned that between 1997 and 1998, McCauley evaded payment of about $787,432 in taxes.

McCauley's sentence included three years of probation.

Deputies check sex offenders

TAMPA - Six sexual offenders were arrested Friday morning and three more were served warrants when Hillsborough County sheriff's deputies conducted the sixth sweep of Operation Insight to contact and verify the addresses of sexual offenders and predators in the University of South Florida area.

Out of the 128 sexual offenders and 13 predators visited, four offenders were arrested and charged with failure to register a new address, said Sheriff's Office spokesman J.D. Callaway. Two offenders were arrested on probation violations. Three warrants were served for absconding.

About 1,400 sexual offenders and predators are registered in Hillsborough County. Dozens have been arrested since Operation Insight began last year.

Pair faces drug charges

TAMPA - Two Tampa residents were arrested Wednesday night after Hillsborough County sheriff's deputies searched their home and found 33 grams of powder cocaine, 61 grams of crack cocaine, less than 20 grams of marijuana, a marijuana plant, a loaded handgun and more than $5,000 cash.

Richard Soler, 35 and Linda Rodriguez, 36, of 4125 Tartan Place were charged with trafficking in cocaine, cultivation of marijuana and possession of marijuana and child neglect.

Deputies estimated the powder cocaine had a $1,400 street value and the crack cocaine had a $6,000 street value.

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