BANGOR, Maine — An Orono man was sentenced Tuesday at the Penobscot Judicial Center to a suspended six-month jail sentence for failing to file state income tax returns for five years.

Michael McAleer, 57, is a former partner in the Bangor law firm Rudman and Winchell, according to the Maine Attorney General’s Office, which prosecuted the case.

The same day he was sentenced, McAleer pleaded no contest to five counts of failing to file state income tax returns for the years 2003 to 2007, Maine Attorney General Janet Mills announced in a press release issued Thursday, the deadline for Mainers to file their tax returns.

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“In these difficult economic times, it is even more important that all Maine citizens follow the tax laws so that everyone pays their fair share,” she said. “My office will take strong action against individuals who fail to comply with the tax laws and force other Maine citizens to make up the difference.”

McAleer’s attorney, Marvin Glazier of Bangor, declined Thursday to comment on the case because he had not seen Mills’ press release.

In addition to the suspended jail sentence, Superior Court Justice William Anderson imposed one year of probation and ordered McAleer to submit his still unfiled tax returns for 2007 and 2008. The judge also required the lawyer to file his future tax returns on time while on probation, according to the press release.

Since the prosecution was initiated in August 2009, McAleer has filed and paid taxes for the years 2003 through 2006, according to Assistant Attorney General Gregg Bernstein, who prosecuted the case.

The Orono man faced up to a year in prison and a fine of up to $5,000 on each count.

McAleer still is a licensed attorney but is no longer practicing law, Bernstein said.