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Business owner accused of tax evasion, pleads guilty

Owners of small businesses are often forced to serve a variety of different roles -- many of which they may have little or no experience or training -- to ensure the business's success. Unfortunately, those who are skilled and knowledgeable at providing a certain service, for example, may feel overwhelmed by the financial management aspect of running a business. This can leave some business owners in Missouri and across the county susceptible to allegations regarding criminal activity over mistakes. In fact, a business owner in another state was recently sentenced to prison after he was charged with tax evasion.

The charges against the man reportedly stem from the taxes he filed for 2012, 2013 and 2014. He is said to have reported the income he made working part time at several different high school's theatre departments. However, he reportedly started his own business in 2012 that involved renting equipment for events, such as proms and weddings. Federal officials claim that he failed to report his income on his taxes.

Officials say that when the man learned that he was the subject of an audit in 2013, he amended his tax returns, claiming that he earned over $220,000 during a three-year period. He reported that income collected over Paypal was the only money earned from the business. This, according to federal prosecutors, was inaccurate.

The man pleaded guilty to the allegations against him, and he must pay over $195,000 in restitution, including interest and penalties. Because it was his first offense, his representative argued that the court allow the man to continue to work so he can pay restitution; however, he was sentenced to five months in prison. Often, when people in Missouri face accusations of tax evasion, they will also choose to plead guilty as they realize there may be sufficient evidence for a conviction. An experienced attorney can help these defendants carefully weigh the accusations and make a well-informed decision regarding their case.

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