Former Washington County Business Owner Pleads Guilty on Sales Tax Evasion Charges

Thursday, August 19, 2010 | 02:06 pm
JONESBOROUGH - The Department of Revenue’s Special Investigations Section conducted the investigation that led to today’s guilty plea of Christa Dawn Hess, former owner of Stop-N-Go Haus, to nine counts of Sales Tax Evasion.
 
Hess was sentenced to one year of supervised probation and ordered to pay restitution to the State in the amount of $16,045.95 for unpaid sales tax. On Jan. 11, 2010, the Washington County Grand Jury returned an 18 count indictment for Evasion of Sales Tax in violation of Tennessee Code Annotated, Section 67-1-1440(g), a Class E felony. According to the indictments, Hess failed to report sales tax totaling $16,045.95 to the state from March 2004 through Sept. 2005.
 
“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 Tony Clark’s 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 91 percent of total state tax revenue. During the 2009-2010 fiscal year, the department collected $10.1 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 2009-2010 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.
 
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View this news release online. Go to www.TN.gov/revenue and click on Newsroom.