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May 20, 2014

Bradenton Vehicle Repair Shop Owner Arrested

Kenneth D. Johnson, 40, owner of Wicked Repairs, LLC, has been arrested on charges that he stole more than $10,000 in sales tax he collected from customers, but failed to send to the state, the Florida Department of Revenue announced.

Mr. Johnson, who lives in Palmetto, was arrested by the Manatee County Sheriff's Department on May 19, 2014 on felony charges relating to the theft of state funds and the failure to file 6 consecutive sales tax returns. If convicted, he faces up to 5 years in prison and up to $5,000 in fines for each count, as well as possible repayment of stolen tax, interest, penalty and investigative costs. Wicked Repairs is located at 4523 30th Street West in Bradenton.

According to Revenue Department investigators, Mr. Johnson collected sales tax from customers at his repair shop. However, during various periods from November 2011 through November 2013, he failed to account for and send to the state all of the sales taxes that he had collected from his customers. Under state law, sales tax is the property of the state at the moment of collection.

"It is an honor to serve the vast majority of Florida businesses who comply with State tax requirements," said Marshall Stranburg, Executive Director, Florida Department of Revenue. "For those that don't, it is our job to enforce the law and ensure honest businesses are not placed at a competitive disadvantage by those who ignore the law or intentionally collect and steal taxpayer dollars."

If you have information about tax crimes, please call the Florida Department of Revenue investigations office in Tampa at 813-744-6506.

Note: Due to the confidential nature of taxpayer records, generally the information found in this release is the only information available from the Department of Revenue concerning this matter. Other information may be available through the arresting agency and the local Clerk of Court.