September 20, 2014

Elyria
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Tax consultant Richard Zakarian ordered to pay $1.4 million

ELYRIA — Lorain tax consultant Richard Zakarian has been ordered to repay $1.4 million to Spitzer Management and nearly a dozen other entities he’s accused of stealing from.

Zakarian, who remains in the Lorain County Jail, hasn’t mounted a defense against a growing number of civil lawsuits that accuse him of taking money he was supposed to use to pay taxes for businesses, nonprofits and churches.

Lorain County Magistrate James Blaszak leveled the $1.4 million judgment against Zakarian during a brief hearing this morning. Attorney Anthony Giardini, who represents about a dozen of Zakarian’s victims, said the actual amount each of his clients will be entitled too will be finalized at a later date.

But it’s uncertain how much they will actually receive. So far, Giardini said, he has only be able to locate around $45,000 of the several million dollars Zakarian is accused of stealing through his company, Benjamin Franklin Tax Services.

Read Wednesday’s Chronicle for more on this story.