Back in grade school, you did all sorts of math problems. You started out with drills to learn your basic addition, subtraction, and multiplication. You learned long division (ugh). You moved on to fractions. And all along the way, as part of your teachers' efforts to convince you that it all matters here in the "real world," you did "story problems." Remember those?
Well, now you're all grown up, so here's a grownup story problem to ponder:
You're an IRS auditor, toiling away to protect the government's revenue base. Then you decide to leave "the dark side" and start your own practice. Things start off great, but you want more. So you mock up some fake tax returns, tell some clients they owe $11 million, and have them make payments into a bogus "trust account." Then you take the money for yourself, make some home improvements, buy a beach house in Mexico, pay to use a private plane, pay $2 million on your personal credit cards and loans, and make some investments. It's good to be rich, isn't it? But now there's a teensy-weensy little problem. The IRS is on to you, your clients are hopping mad, and two of them are scheduled to testify against you! What do you do?
Well, if you're Steven Martinez of Ramona, California, you send your limousine driver (!) to offer a hit man $100,000 to take out the clients. But you don't just whisper some names in his ear and slink back home. Oh, no. Because you're an accountant