Cadaver dealer pleads guilty to tax evasion

Henry Reid, the former director of UCLA's Willed Body cadaver donation program has pleaded guilty to filing a false federal income tax return for the year 2002 and admitted to concealing $54,400 in income from the IRS over a four-year period.

In 2004, Reid was accused of selling body parts to a middleman for a profit, and the middleman was supposedly reselling the body parts to research companies. The allegation was that Reid engaged in the cadaver-trafficking scheme from May 1999 through February 2004.

Reid has agreed to cooperate with the IRS in determining and paying the taxes, penalties, and interest he owes to the IRS for the years 2000 through 2003. Reid also agreed to cooperate fully with other law enforcement issues relating to his case. Reid faces a statutory maximum three years in federal prison. The U.S. attorney's office has indicated that Reid might be able to serve a lesser term and do so in home detention. Reid also faces a potential fine of up to $250,000 for his tax case.

Family members who had donated their relatives' remains to UCLA filed the lawsuit in 2004, stating that they had received written assurances from UCLA that the body parts would never be sold but would instead be used by the university in medical research, eventually cremated, and then returned to the families.

Criminal charges of conspiracy and grand theft are still pending against Reid in the case. UCLA shut down the Willed Body program three years ago when the initial charges were filed. The university has since reopened the program under stricter controls.

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