Blount County Man Surrenders on Sales Tax Fraud Charges

Tuesday, October 04, 2011 | 08:46 am

Nashville, Tenn. - The Special Investigations Section of the Tennessee Department of Revenue conducted the investigation that led to the indictment and subsequent surrender of Mark Peter Sawyer, age 56, of Louisville, Tenn.  On October 3, 2011, Sawyer surrendered to special agents at the Davidson County Sheriff's Department.  Beond was set at $30,000.  

On September 16, 2011, Sawyer was indicted by a Davidson County Grand Jury on one Class E felony count of Tax Evasion in violation of Tenn. Code Ann. Section 67-1-1440. The indictment charges that Sawyer attempted to evade tax due the State of Tennessee on behalf of Santa Verde, Inc., by purchasing a 35’ Sea Ray Cabin boat for $67,500 and not paying the sales tax. The alleged fraud resulted in unreported tax due totaling $4,805.00.

If convicted, Sawyer could be sentenced up to a maximum of two years in the state penitentiary and fined $3,000. 

"The Department of Revenue promotes voluntary taxpayer compliance by educating taxpayers, aggressively pursuing criminal sanctions and demanding accountability when taxpayers engage in fraudulent activity," said Revenue Commissioner Richard H. Roberts. "This indictment underscores the department's ongoing efforts to enforce Tennessee's tax laws." The Davidson County District Attorney General’s Office will prosecute the case.

Citizens who suspect violations of Tennessee’s revenue laws should call the toll-free tax fraud hot line at (800) FRAUDTX (372-8389).

In addition to collecting state taxes, $2.0 billion of local sales and business taxes were collected by the department for local governments during the 2011 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