Investigators recently entered the home of a Minnesota restaurant owner to conduct a search. They claim to have discovered evidence suggesting that the person in question, along with another, have committed tax evasion and theft crimes. The state Department of Revenue has stated that the search and investigation have led to more than 25 felony counts against each of the defendants.
The restaurateurs are apparently a married couple. Among multiple criminal charges, they are accused of filing false or fraudulent tax returns. It is also alleged that the husband and wife have committed “theft by swindle.”
What investigators claim to have found in the home
In most cases, police must have a validly authorized warrant to search a person’s home. There are several exemptions, however, that make it possible to conduct a lawful search without a warrant. When police entered the home of the restaurant owners, they say they found evidence of a “ghost ownership” of the business. Investigators also claim that there was computer software inside the residence that was supposedly being used to suppress sales data, keeping the business owners in a lower tax bracket.
There are two restaurants involved in the investigation. Investigators are accusing the couple of owing more than $800,000 in sales taxes. Tax, business theft and fraud issues are typically complex because there is usually a lot of documentation involved that must be scrutinized, and, sometimes, what appears to be criminal activity may, in fact, have been caused by clerical mistakes or other human error. It’s wise for anyone facing tax or theft charges in conjunction with a business to seek immediate legal support before heading to court.