Cheyenne Fitwall Creator Pleads Guilty to Tax, Medicaid Fraud
Cheyenne man and creator of Fitwall, Douglas E. Brendle, has pleaded guilty to two counts of willfully failing to file his income tax returns and one count of making a fraudulent application for health care benefits.
The 54-year-old Brendle entered the plea today (Wednesday) before U.S. District Court Judge Kelly H. Rankin as part of a deal with prosecutors.
According to court documents, Brendle sold the rights to Fitwall in January 2013, but failed to file individual income tax returns or pay income taxes in 2013 or 2014 on the nearly $1.5 million he received. His conduct resulted in a tax loss of $404,501.
In December 2013, Brendle caused a false renewal application to be filed for Wyoming Medicaid claiming his household had no income. During 2013-2014, Wyoming Medicaid paid Brendle over $20,000 in benefits to which he and his family were not entitled.
Brendle, whose sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 24, is facing a maximum sentence of three years in prison as well as a period of supervised release, restitution and monetary penalties.