Former Owner of Wendell’s World Beat Grill Sentenced on Tax Evasion and Theft ChargesWednesday, January 13, 2010 | 10:32 am
MEMPHIS - The Special Investigations Section of the Tennessee Department of Revenue conducted the investigation that led to yesterday’s sentencing of Wendell Price, former owner of the Memphis restaurant, on four counts of Sales Tax Evasion (Class E felonies) and one count of Theft of Property (a Class C felony).
Judge John T. Fowlkes, Jr., sentenced Price (age 41) to three years. The sentence was suspended and Price was granted diversion and placed on probation. The probation agreement requires Price to pay full restitution to the state of $31,302, obtain full-time employment or ten hours per week community service until employment is secured, and truthfully report all tax information to the Department of Revenue if he ever owns or operates another business.
“The majority of businesses pay appropriate taxes,” said Revenue Commissioner Reagan Farr. “This case serves as a warning to others who think they can get away with tax fraud in Tennessee. We will continue to pursue criminal activity and prosecute tax evaders to maintain fairness in our tax structure for Tennesseans.”
This case was pursued criminally by the department in cooperation with District Attorney General William L. Gibbon’s office. Citizens who suspect violations of the Tennessee 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.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.
Related News: Dec. 21, 2009 - Shelby County Man Pleads Guilty to Theft and Sales Tax Evasion (http://news.tennesseeanytime.org/node/4351).