Bidding has begun in the online auction of a St. Thomas home seized by the U.S. Marshal’s Office as part of a $48 million tax scam in Washington, D.C.
The house, at Sorgenfri 5-1, was owned by Richard Walters, 49, of Bowie, Md. Walters is the brother of Harriette Walters, an employee of the District of Columbia Office of Tax and Revenue. She was arrested in November 2007 and charged with heading a tax-refund scam that netted approximately $48 million by issuing phony property-tax refund checks to non-existent businesses.
Hariette Walters was sentenced June 30 to 17 and a half years in prison for her role in the scheme. Her brother was sentenced in November to 51 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release.
The auction is taking place on line at http://www.bid4assets.com.
The auction opened Monday for online bidding, according to Jenny Lynch of the auction website. The opening price was $212,500, and each successive big must be an increase of at least $14,875. As of 8:30 p.m. Monday bidding had reached $350,000.
The auction listing received more than 41,270 page views, Lynch said, and a three-hour open house last week drew more than 60 people.
The auction will remain open for bidding through 3 p.m. Wednesday. Those interested must deposit $42,500 to bid.
Further information can be obtained by visiting the auction site at http://www.bid4assets.com/SSV12.