Fugitive Georgetown accountant Charles J. Walsh was en route from Ireland yesterday under escort of U.S. marshals after he dropped his fight against extradition to face tax-shelter fraud charges here.

The U.S. attorney's office said Walsh would appear today in U.S. District Judge Gerhard A. Gesell's Washington courtroom to plead guilty to one count of wire fraud in one case and one count of false pretenses in a second.

Walsh had been living in a mansion near Dublin while prosecutors sought his return. Assistant U.S. Attorney Carol Bruce said Walsh decided yesterday to quit his legal battle and was placed immediately on a plane.

He was indicted last May on charges involving the leasing by investors of mostly nonexistent marine shipping containers in exchange for tax deductions and writeoffs, according to court papers. Prosecutors say the scheme bilked the United States of about $6.8 million, and that Walsh pocketed about $2.5 million.

Walsh fled to Ireland in 1984 and was arrested there in December, one day after a U.S.-Irish extradition treaty took effect. Prosecutors then unsealed a second indictment charging Walsh with defrauding 118 investors of about $600,000 in an alleged tax scheme involving securities transactions.