Atkins Diet Backer Indicted on Tax Evasion Counts

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) A Lawrence obesity specialist who co-authored the “Atkins Diabetes Revolution” with the late weight loss expert and others has been indicted on tax evasion charges.

The U.S. attorney’s office said Wednesday that Dr. Mary Vernon is charged with five counts of tax evasion and one count of making a false statement to a bank to obtain a loan.

The “Atkins Diabetes Revolution” was published in 2004, a year after the death of Dr. Robert Atkins.

The 60-year-old Vernon earned almost $800,000 by working for Atkins’ companies from 2003 to 2008. While applying to refinance a home, she is accused of providing documents purported to be income tax returns from 2006 and 2007. But she didn’t file returns either year.

Vernon didn’t immediately return a phone call from The Associated Press.