Created in 1976, the Tennessee Department of Revenue's Special Investigations Section (SI) was modeled after the Internal Revenue Service's Criminal Investigative Division. Today more than 20 staff members work in the unit's three offices in Nashville, Memphis and Knoxville.
SI was established to serve as the primary criminal tax enforcement arm of the commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Revenue. The section's objectives are to review alleged violations of the tax laws, investigate violations which appear flagrant, and recommend criminal and civil statutory sanctions as appropriate based upon the evidence gathered during the investigation. The criminal and civil sanctions imposed are designed to have a significant deterrent effect among tax violators and a positive influence on the compliance attitudes of taxpayers in general. Special Investigations has the responsibility of investigating allegations of tax fraud and fraudulent schemes that harm Tennessee business owners and consumers and assisting in building public trust and confidence in the administration of Tennessee 's tax structure. The 31 local area district attorney generals' offices across the state are responsible for prosecution of the tax cases investigated by SI.