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New Orleans judge indicted for filing false tax returns

By: - January 10, 2022 10:29 am

A New Orleans city court judge has been charged with four counts of tax fraud for not claiming income she received for performing wedding ceremonies.

The U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Louisiana announced Friday a grand jury had returned an indictment for Second City Court Judge Ernestine “Teena” Anderson-Trahan. From 2013 to 2016, she allegedly officiated hundreds of marriage ceremonies each year but did not report her entire income from that work.

Judge Teena Anderson-Trahan
Judge Teena Anderson-Trahan

According to the indictment, Anderson-Trahan earned between $80 and $100, paid in cash, for each marriage she officiated. The judge charged higher rates for performing wedding ceremonies outside of normal business hours, away from the courthouse and on Valentine’s Day.

Anderson-Trahan also allegedly filed to report income she earned for outside legal work before she became a judge, the indictment said.

An initial court appearance for Anderson-Trahan is scheduled for Jan. 24 before a magistrate judge. If convicted, she faces a maximum penalty of three years in prison for each of the four counts of filing a false tax return.


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Greg LaRose
Greg LaRose

Greg LaRose has covered news for more than 30 years in Louisiana. Before coming to the Louisiana Illuminator, he was the chief investigative reporter for WDSU-TV in New Orleans. He previously led the government and politics team for The Times-Picayune |, and was editor in chief at New Orleans CityBusiness. Greg's other career stops include Tiger Rag, South Baton Rouge Journal, the Covington News Banner, Louisiana Radio Network and multiple radio stations.