If you conceal assets from creditors during bankruptcy, you are breaking the law and could face heavy fines and imprisonment. Cyril Lunn, a Massachusetts based construction contractor found this out when he concealed assets and made false statements under penalty of perjury earlier this year. He was finally sentenced to a lengthy prison sentence by U.S. District Court Judge Timothy Hellman.
In a bizarre sequence of events Lunn first transferred over $3 million worth of assets to himself before filing for bankruptcy in 2001. He then proceeded to make false statements under oath about the transaction, and finally rented a snowmobile in Main and fled across the board into Canada where he was just extradited from last year.
The legal issues for Mr. Lunn seem to have reached a snowball effect as he is also facing smuggling charges for bringing large amounts of cash into the US and is also facing a multimillion-dollar civil suit in Maine. Crime almost paid off for this individuals, and while there may be those that have escaped justice by committing bankruptcy fraud or fleeing the country (both of which Mr. Lunn managed to do for a long time), justice finally prevailed. The actions of this individual not only affect his future but also that of his family.
Most individuals that attempt to transfer and hide assets during a bankruptcy proceeding are found, caught, and convicted. It is never a good idea to risk one’s freedom to save money in the long run. Bankruptcy is not meant to be a get out of debt free card, but a way to rectify a bad financial situation.