MEMPHIS, Tenn. – The Special Investigations Section of the Tennessee Department of Revenue conducted the investigation that led to the arrest of Kevin D. Johnson, age 42, owner of K’Jay’s Liquors in Memphis, Tenn. Johnson was arrested yesterday by deputies of the Shelby County Sheriff’s Department. Johnson was charged with theft of property over $10,000 and tax evasion. Bond was set at $10,000.
On August 6, 2009, the Shelby County Grand Jury indicted Johnson on one Class C felony count of Theft of Property over $10,000 in violation of Tenn. Code Ann. Section 39-14-103; 36 Class E felony counts of Sales Tax Fraud in violation of Tenn. Code Ann. Section 67-1-1440(d) for filing false sales tax returns; and one Class E felony count of Sales Tax Fraud in violation of Tenn. Code Ann. Section 67-1-1440(g) for failure to remit collected sales tax in the amount of $55,558.36 from Jan. 1, 2005 through Dec. 31, 2007.
“The Department of Revenue is committed to applying Tennessee’s tax laws and policies uniformly to all taxpayers to ensure a level playing field,” said Revenue Commissioner Reagan Farr. “The department cannot and will not allow people engaged in fraudulent tax activities to have a competitive advantage over honest businesspeople.”
If convicted, Johnson could be sentenced to a maximum of six years in the state penitentiary and fined $10,000 for theft of property over $10,000, and two years in the state penitentiary and fined $3,000 for each count of sales tax evasion. Additional civil taxes, penalties and interest will be due the state.
This case was pursued criminally by the department in cooperation with District Attorney General William L. Gibbons’ Office. Citizens who suspect violations of Tennessee’s revenue laws should call the toll-free tax fraud hot line at (800) FRAUDTX (372-8389).
The Department of Revenue is responsible for the administration of state tax laws and motor vehicle title and registration laws established by the legislature and the collection of taxes and fees associated with those laws. The Department of Revenue collects approximately 92 percent of total state tax revenue. During the 2008-2009 fiscal year, the department collected $10.2 billion in state taxes and fees. In addition to collecting state taxes, $1.9 billion of local sales tax was collected by the department for local governments during the 2008-2009 fiscal year. Besides collecting taxes, the department enforces the revenue laws fairly and impartially in an effort to encourage voluntary taxpayer compliance. The department also apportions revenue collections for distribution to the various state funds and local units of government. To learn more about the department, log on to www.TN.gov/revenue.