Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

The .gov means it’s official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you’re on a federal government site.

Https

The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

California Psychologist Sentenced to 30 Months in Prison for Tax Evasion, Social Security Disability Fraud

November 06, 2014

Office Affiliation: The Office of Investigations

From the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Northern District of California:

OAKLAND – Hugh Leslie Baras was sentenced today to 30 months in prison and ordered to pay restitution of $593,513 to the Internal Revenue Service and the Social Security Administration for tax evasion and theft of government property, United States Attorney Melinda Haag, and Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge José M. Martinez announced.

On Feb. 3, 2014, Baras, 70, a Berkeley psychologist, was convicted by a jury of five counts of tax evasion and one count of theft of government property.

The evidence presented during the seven-day trial, showed that Baras, who formerly worked as a psychologist at Kaiser Permanente, and as an Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine, started a solo, private practice in Palo Alto, Calif., in late 2002. At his private practice, Baras provided clinical psychotherapy services to clients. During the years 2005 through 2009, Baras’s private practice generated over $1,000,000 of income. Although he filed timely federal income tax returns for each of these years, Baras omitted all of the income produced by his private practice from those returns.

In addition, although he was self-employed and earning substantial income, Baras continued to collect Disability Insurance Benefits from the Social Security Administration. Between 2006 and 2009, Baras received Disability Insurance Benefits payments to which he was not entitled totaling $80,615. Also during this period, Baras sold nearly $600,000 worth of gold and silver coins to a coin-broker in Oakland. These sales created capital gains which Baras also failed to report on his tax returns.

The sentence was handed down by the Honorable Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers, United States District Court Judge, in Oakland. Judge Gonzalez Rogers also sentenced Baras to a three-year period of supervised release, ordered him to forfeit $80,615, and to pay a fine of $7,500. Baras was ordered to self-surrender for service of his sentence on Sept. 29, 2014.

Michael G. Pitman is the Assistant United States Attorney prosecuting the case. The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, and the United States Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General.

OAKLAND – Hugh Leslie Baras was sentenced today to 30 months in prison and ordered to pay restitution of $593,513 to the Internal Revenue Service and the Social Security Administration for tax evasion and theft of government property, United States Attorney Melinda Haag, and Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge José M. Martinez announced.

On Feb. 3, 2014, Baras, 70, a Berkeley psychologist, was convicted by a jury of five counts of tax evasion and one count of theft of government property.

The evidence presented during the seven-day trial, showed that Baras, who formerly worked as a psychologist at Kaiser Permanente, and as an Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine, started a solo, private practice in Palo Alto, Calif., in late 2002. At his private practice, Baras provided clinical psychotherapy services to clients. During the years 2005 through 2009, Baras’s private practice generated over $1,000,000 of income. Although he filed timely federal income tax returns for each of these years, Baras omitted all of the income produced by his private practice from those returns.

In addition, although he was self-employed and earning substantial income, Baras continued to collect Disability Insurance Benefits from the Social Security Administration. Between 2006 and 2009, Baras received Disability Insurance Benefits payments to which he was not entitled totaling $80,615. Also during this period, Baras sold nearly $600,000 worth of gold and silver coins to a coin-broker in Oakland. These sales created capital gains which Baras also failed to report on his tax returns.

The sentence was handed down by the Honorable Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers, United States District Court Judge, in Oakland. Judge Gonzalez Rogers also sentenced Baras to a three-year period of supervised release, ordered him to forfeit $80,615, and to pay a fine of $7,500. Baras was ordered to self-surrender for service of his sentence on Sept. 29, 2014.

Michael G. Pitman is the Assistant United States Attorney prosecuting the case. The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, and the United States Social Security Administration, Office of Inspector General.

Looking for U.S. government information and services?
Visit USA.gov