Erik Ketelaar, Wannabe GOP Bigwig, Under Fire from Clients of His Company Tio Sam Taxes

Lara's plight was neither unique nor the worst of the bunch.

One woman, who did not want her name published, claimed that Tio Sam owes her at least $6,000, for two different years' tax returns of about $3,000 each.

She said she'd done a couple of years' worth of taxes at once, and the checks were directed to a Tio Sam's address. She showed me a letter from the IRS, which suggested that one check was mailed in care of Tio Sam.

But she never got it. Currently, she's unemployed and just underwent an operation for which she owes money.

She also has three kids, no husband, and recently had to pawn her car to a title loan company.

"I need the money," she said through an interpreter. "I'm in a hard situation."

Enrique, a cook at a Phoenix restaurant with a wife and two children to support, says he saw Tio Sam ads on Univision and did his taxes through the company. Once again, his refund check was supposed to go to Tio Sam.

He said a Tio Sam employee told him the company's account was "frozen" because it was "receiving too much money."

Enrique said he's complained to the IRS, the state Attorney General's Office, and the Better Business Bureau.

"I just want something to be done," he told me, "so, next year, these people won't be able to hurt anybody else."

Those who read this column regularly know I'm not exactly a "consumer reports" kind of guy, but these complaints and the volume of them intrigued me because I'd seen Tio Sam Taxes owner Erik Ketelaar before.

Ketelaar, a 31-year-old CPA, has appeared on TV advertising a business seminar on July 24 featuring none other than Sheriff Joe Arpaio, whom no one has ever mistaken for "Tio Sam."

The Facebook profile for his Scottsdale firm Ketelaar Accounting shows a photo of Ketelaar with Arpaio.

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Erik Ketelaar wrote me a bad check. He is an accountant, and he wrote bad checks. He isn't even good at being a CPA.


Your the best hope he never has another opportunity to take anyones money again

66rock topcommenter

Oh looky the next GOP Az state senator!

WhoKnows topcommenter

These "want to be a GOP bigwig" types are simply too stupid to understand ethics and what sane people expect.....


lol, US POlitics. Best politics money can buy lol.


In addition to "reducing red tape and lowering taxes," almost all Republicans are in favor of reducing citizens' rights to bring small lawsuits against private companies like Ketelaar's (which they like to describe as "frivolous").  So it doesn't surprise me that he's insinuating himself with gubernatorial candidates from the GOP.
What a scumbag.  As usual, people least able to afford it are the ones being ripped off.  Tio Bandito, more like it.


Classic...a guy who is an incompetent businessman at best, and a scummy, money-stealing, criminal slimeball at worst, blames the IRS for all his problems instead of his own slimy, sketchy business practices. Of course said guy becomes a GOP kingmaker; the GOP hates the IRS too, just like he does. And just like him the GOP wants to do away with all those evil, nasty regulations designed to keep slimy scumbags like him  from stealing vulnerable people's money so they can make a profit...uh...I mean....designed to keep good ol 'mercun small business people from making an honest living! Yeah, that's what I mean....

It's so predictable it's not even funny anymore....


He sounds like the perfect guy to teach a course in Republican Business Ethics.

eric.nelson745 topcommenter

Why is the IRS so coy about whether or not this crook is being investigated? That is a mystery all by itself. Hopefully he'll someday be running his business from a prison cell, just like a Mafia don. Oh, has anyone contacted the BBB? Surely they have something on him.

MaskedMagician1967 topcommenter

This guy is a con artist.

Nothing more and nothing less.


As a first class Republican operative, Erik has the all purpose answer to the problem of not getting the refunds to his sucke. . ., I mean customers-----It's OBAMA's fault!!!


@eric.nelson745 It's not a matter of being coy.  I seriously doubt any government agency would confirm or deny an investigation against any private citizen.  They might say "the situation" is being looked at but I seriously doubt they would confirm looking at charges against a GOP bigwig.

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