Former Lee doctor convicted of tax evasion

Robert Sperrazza

Robert Sperrazza

ALBANY, Ga. — Robert B. Sperrazza, a former anesthesiologist and resident of Lee County, has been convicted of tax evasion and other federal charges.

According to a news release by the U.S. Department of Justice, Sperrazza, 60, was convicted Friday after a four-day jury trial in Albany before Judge W. Louis Sands, U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia.

In counts 1-3 of the indictments against him, Sperrazza was charged with felony tax evasion. In counts 4-5, he was charged with currency structuring.

The government’s evidence demonstrated that Sperrazza personally cashed more than $1 million in patient checks at the counter of a local bank in Albany. According to the Justice Department, cash transactions were always in amounts of less than $10,000 for the purpose of evading the bank’s federal reporting requirements and for the purpose of furthering his tax avoidance scheme.

Sperrazza was found guilty on all five counts.

The Justice Department release states that for many years Sperrazza was an Albany-based anesthesiologist who later moved to Panama City Beach, Fla., and opened a pain clinic there. Officials say Sperrazza is not currently involved in the practice of medicine.

According to the Justice Department, Sperrazza was out on bond following Friday’s verdict. He faces a maximum sentence of five years for each count of tax evasion and a maximum sentence of 10 years for each count of currency structuring. He could also face a fine of up to $250,000 for each of the five separate convictions.

“In these difficult economic times, the evasion of taxes is especially damaging to the United States, and this office will pursue vigorously those who seek to enrich themselves by evading their lawful obligation to the government,” U.S. Attorney Michael Moore said.