A 70-year-old Long Beach woman was sentenced today for concealing her ex-husband's income to help him avoid paying state taxes, the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office announced.
Linda Ann Knowlton was sentenced to formal probation for three years and ordered to pay $598,000 in restitution to the California State Franchise Tax Board. She pleaded no contest to one felony count of tax evasion in September 2016.
Deputy District Attorney Jeffrey Stodel of the White Collar Crime Division prosecuted the case
Linda Knowlton was married to Tommy Knowlton, who made millions of dollars in the oil business. He stopped filing income tax returns in 1996 and between 2008 and 2011 funneled more than $70 million dollars to his ex-wife's personal checking account.
During this time, Linda Knowlton had no other source of income other than from her ex-husband. They continued living together at a home she bought in spite of her lack of personal income.
As the only signer to her checking account, the defendant would often write checks to Tommy Knowlton and his creditors to be paid by the money he deposited into her account in an effort to launder his income and conceal it from tax authorities, the prosecutor added.
Tommy Knowlton passed away in 2015.
Case BA446565 was investigated by the state Franchise Tax Board.
Los Angeles County District Attorney / February 21, 2017