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Milwaukee pastor pleads guilty to filing false tax return

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Judges gavel and stryker By Brian Turner (Flickr: My Trusty Gavel) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Judges gavel and stryker By Brian Turner (Flickr: My Trusty Gavel) [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

MILWAUKEE (WTAQ) - A pastor and private school administrator in Milwaukee has pleaded guilty to filing a false income tax return.

41-year-old Gregory Goner struck a plea deal in which two other counts were dropped – stealing federal funds and wire fraud. He also agreed to pay $68,000 in restitution to the IRS.

Goner was the pastor of the Spirit Governed Baptist Church in Milwaukee – and he was the president of the Excel Academy. The school received federal grants, as well as state tax funds to educate low-income kids under the state’s voucher program.

Prosecutors said Goner filed a false income tax return in 2007 when his church bought investment properties for him, covered repairs, and gave him $7,500 for his personal use.

His lawyer said Goner made mistakes with his tax forms – but there was no merit to the fraud and theft counts. 

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