June 21, 2012
Michael A. Vazquez, 49, and his wife Heather C. Vazquez, 46, the owners of Stoney's Auto Repair, located in Williston, have been arrested on charges that they stole more than $13,000 in sales tax they collected from customers, but failed to send in to the state, the Florida Department of Revenue announced.
The couple, who live in Williston, was arrested by the Levy County Sheriff's Department on June 14, 2012 on a felony and misdemeanor charges relating to theft of state funds, failure to file six consecutive returns and refusal to file returns and pay taxes due. If convicted, each faces up to 5 years in prison and up to $5,000 in fines, as well as possible repayment of stolen tax, interest, penalty and investigative costs. The repair shop is located at 811 East Noble Avenue in Williston.
According to Revenue Department investigators, the couple collected tax from customers at their business. However, during various periods beginning in 2007 and lasting through periods in 2012, they failed to send into the state all of the sales taxes that they had collected or file tax returns as required by law. 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 Lisa Vickers, 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 worse—intentionally collect and steal taxpayer dollars."
If you have information about tax crimes, please call the Florida Department of Revenue investigations office in Alachua at 386-418-4444.
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.