State

Mistrial declared in Modestan's felony tax case

A Stanislaus County judge declared a mistrial late Tuesday after a jury failed to reach a verdict in the case of a Modesto physician charged with felony state income tax evasion.

Franchise Tax Board agents said self-employed orthopedic surgeon Dr. Thomas Kaschak, 51, failed to file state income tax returns from 2000 to 2004 despite earnings of $1.6 million.

The tax board alleged Ka-schak owed nearly $138,000 in unpaid taxes, not counting penalties, interest and investigation costs that could double the bill.

Jurors deliberated for three days before they told Superior Court Judge Ricardo Córdova they were deadlocked.

"We're disappointed that they couldn't reach a verdict," defense attorney Frank Carson said Wednesday. "But we're looking forward to a retrial, and he'll be vindicated."

Keith Lyon, a prosecutor with the state attorney general's office, said he plans to take Kaschak to trial again July 6.

"We're going forward," Lyon said.

Kaschak was arrested in March at a south Lake Tahoe casino after he failed to appear for three court dates, tax board officials said. Carson called the incident "grandstanding" by tax board agents.

Second case filed

Prosecutors also have filed a second case against Ka- schak, alleging he racked up $58,000 more in back taxes while out on bail.

Kaschak has performed more than 1,100 procedures since 1996 while under contract at Memorial Medical Center, state officials said. He also operated a medical software service, Consolidated Practice Management Inc., and an office on 14th Street in downtown Modesto that since has closed, tax board officials said.

Kaschak told The Bee in 2007 that he cares for trauma patients who come through the emergency room at Memorial and sees patients in a clinic there. He said his routine is to work for a week at the hospital and then return to Nevada where he said he lives.

Bee staff writer Merrill Balassone can be reached at mbalassone@modbee.com or 578-2337.

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