TOMS RIVER – An influential Republican leader will continue to appeal his conviction for tax evasion and fraud.
Former Ocean County GOP Chairman George R. Gilmore, 71, of Toms River, was convicted of not paying federal income tax for his employees and lying on a loan application. He was sentenced to one year and one day in prison.
He had appealed that, but that appeal was shot down earlier this month. The appellate panel upheld his 2019 conviction. Now, another appeal is on the horizon.
His attorney, Kevin Marino, said that they are petitioning for the entire appellate court to rehear the case-not just a panel.
As a partner and shareholder at Gilmore & Monahan, he was in control of the law firm’s financials. This firm has since closed and his partner and employees were not charged. For tax quarters ending March 31, 2016 and June 30, 2016, the firm withheld tax payments from its employees’ checks, but Gilmore did not pay them in full to the IRS.
Additionally, he applied for a Uniform Residential Loan Application (URLA) to obtain refinancing of a mortgage loan for $1.5 million with a “cash out” provision that provided Gilmore would obtain cash from the loan on Nov. 21, 2014. On Jan. 22, 2015, he updated the application, failing to disclose outstanding 2013 tax liabilities and personal loans he got from other people. He had received $572,000 from the cash out portion of the loan.
The jury was not able to reach a decision on the charge of tax evasion for years 2013, 2014, and 2015, the court spokesman said. He was acquitted of two charges of filing false tax returns for calendar years 2013 and 2014.
He had a sentencing hearing on January 22. There, he was sentenced to a year and a day in Fort Dix Federal Correctional Institution. He had also been sentenced to three years of probation after that.
The sentencing judge did not fine Gilmore for any of his offenses, but said he would end up paying “about a million a year” in contract penalties.
The sentencing judge ordered mental health treatment.
Instead of paying taxes, he had been spending a great deal on home remodeling and lavish decorations, reportedly on such things as a mammoth tusk and a statue of George Washington.
During the appeal handled by his attorney, Marino alleged that the trial did not include expert psychiatric testimony regarding his claim of having a hoarding disorder that made him spend lavishly on personal expenses.
In the non-precedential ruling written by Judge Thomas Hardiman for a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, the court rejected four separate claims raised by Gilmore. It agreed with the government that the trial judge properly excluded the psychiatric expert. Gilmore contended that testimony would have negated his intent to commit the charged tax crimes. The court also rejected Gilmore’s challenges to the jury instructions and sufficiency of evidence.
Gilmore is the grandson of late Seaside Heights mayor J. Stanley Tunney, of which the Tunney bridge between Toms River and Seaside is named.
Gilmore’s law firm did work for a number of towns, which dissolved their contracts with him after his arrest. He also had to step down from being chairman of the county Republicans. Frank Holman took his place, but he is reportedly still very influential in local politics. In fact, several sources stated that he persuaded local Republicans to back David Richter in the 3rd District Congressional race. Richter ultimately lost to incumbent Andy Kim.
Gilmore has remained active in politics, attending county events and forming a political consulting firm with Freeholder Jack Kelly.