A 25-year-old Boulder man has been indicted by a federal grand jury on suspicion of drug-related money laundering, officials announced Thursday.
Taylor Smith Hills was arrested on suspicion of dealing ecstasy, and he will be prosecuted by the Boulder County District Attorney's Office on the drug charges, said Jeff Dorschner, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office in Denver.
Hills also is facing federal charges of money laundering after prosecutors say he took the money he earned for dealing drugs and then falsified documents to make it look like he was operating legal businesses.
Hills was at the center of an Internal Revenue Service investigation because he didn't pay taxes on his income, according to the indictment. Even if it comes from illegal activity, the IRS requires the income to be reported.
"He didn't claim the drug money as income on his taxes," Dorschner said.
A federal grand jury indicted Hills on Jan. 29 on suspicion of money laundering in connection to distribution of a controlled substance, illegal use of mail, false statement on a loan application and failure to pay taxes.
The indictment alleges that Hills made a false statement in order to get a loan from JP Morgan Chase, a federally insured bank, in connection with a vehicle loan application.
If he's convicted, the indictment says he'll be forced to forfeit a 2008 Ducati motorcycle and nearly $7,000 in a Roth Individual Retirement Account.
Hills was arrested following a multi-agency investigation that included the U.S. Attorney's Office, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Homeland Security, the IRS and the Boulder County Drug Task Force.
He will be arraigned on his drug charges at 1 p.m. Feb. 15, according to Catherine Olguin, spokeswoman for the Boulder County DA's Office.
Cmdr. Tommy Sloan, of the Boulder County Drug Task Force, said his agency carried out a wire tapping investigation for the lengthy probe last spring. He said Hills faces 41 felony drug counts and had possessed about 1 kilogram of ecstasy.
"He's in some hot water," Sloan said.
Authorities believe Hills was part of a larger drug ring, with ecstasy dealers also in California and Oregon.
Hills is being represented by Harvey Steinberg, a high-profile attorney who has worked with Denver Broncos players. Steinberg did not return calls from the Camera on Thursday.
If convicted of money laundering, Hills faces up to 20 years in federal prison and a fine of up to $500,000 per count. If convicted of illegal use of the mail, he faces up to four years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 per count. If convicted of a false statement in a loan application, he faces up to 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $1 million per count. If convicted of failing to file a tax return, he faces up to a year in prison and a fine of up to $25,000 per count.
Contact Camera Staff Writer Brittany Anas at 303-473-1132 or email@example.com.