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Attorney who hunted for ADA cases in Manteca charged with IRS tax fraud
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SACRAMENTO (AP) — A California attorney who has sued thousands of small businesses — including more than three dozen in Manteca and Ripon — for alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act has been indicted on charges that he filed fraudulent tax returns on income from the lawsuits.

The Sacramento Bee reports that attorney Scott N. Johnson was indicted Thursday by a federal grand jury with three counts of making and subscribing false tax returns.

The indictment alleges that Johnson understated his income from 2012 to 2014 from settlements of lawsuits filed under the ADA.

Johnson, a quadriplegic who forced ADA improvements at businesses around Northern California, faces up to three years in prison and a $100,000 fine for each count.

His attorney, Malcolm Segal, said they will respond in court but believe the IRS got Johnson’s taxes wrong.

Johnson’s forte was driving around to business in search of possible ADA violations even some that were a matter of a hand rail for a handicapped toilet stall being off a quarter of an inch. 

Business owners not only had to make corrections but also faced lawsuits from Johnson for the infractions as allowed under state and federal law.