SYRACUSE, N.Y. –– An Ithaca-based contractor was sentenced to five years of probation for under-reporting nearly $4 million in income over several years.

William Harrell, 58, of Ithaca was sentenced Wednesday for filing a false tax return, after pleading guilty to the charge back in February.

As part of his guilty plea Harrell admitted that in October 2016 he filed a tax return for the year 2015 in which he, “knowingly and willfully underreported revenue he received through his construction and remodeling business,” a press release from Acting United States Attorney Antoinette T. Bacon and Jonathan D. Larsen, Special Agent in Charge of Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation for the New York Field Office states.

Harrell also admitted to underreporting revenue for the years 2012 through 2014 and 2016. Harrell failed to report approximately $3,994,866 in income –– avoiding $422,843 in federal income taxes.

The court also ordered Harrell to pay restitution to the IRS in the amount of $907,669.75 which includes unpaid taxes, interest and penalties.

This case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Sutcliffe.

Anna Lamb

Anna Lamb is a reporter for the Ithaca Voice. Questions? Story tips? Contact her at