Court upholds tax evasion convictions of Atkins diet doctor

WICHITA, Kan. – A federal appeals court has upheld the convictions of a Kansas obesity specialist who co-authored the “Atkins Diabetes Revolution.”

The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday affirmed all five counts of attempted tax evasion against Dr. Mary C. Vernon. The Lawrence woman was sentenced in 2014 to three years and five months and ordered to pay more than $311,000 in restitution.

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

The appellate panel rejected Vernon’s claim that the trial judge miscalculated her sentence, based on a tax loss of $988,000 from 1991 to 2002. The lower court had also given Vernon more prison time because she created a sham corporation called Rockledge Medical Services to evade income taxes.