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October 7, 2009

Owner of Ocala Electrical Supply Business Arrested

The owner of a now closed Marion County business that specialized in electrical supplies was arrested on charges that she failed to file six consecutive returns, the Florida Department of Revenue announced.

Debra Mooney Strade, 45, of Ocala, was arrested by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Department on September 26, 2009 on a felony charge of failure to file six consecutive returns. If convicted, she faces up to 5 years in prison and up to $5,000 in fine, as well as possible tax, interest, penalty and investigative costs. Ms. Strade owned Paramount Supply, Inc., 710 South West 20th Street, Suite 5, Ocala.

According to Revenue Department investigators, Ms. Strade routinely collected tax from customers at her business. However, during various periods beginning in 2008 through periods in 2009, she failed to file her tax returns as required by law.

"Most Florida businesses do an excellent job of meeting the state’s requirements for collecting and submitting sales tax, which pays for services Floridians need," said Lisa Echeverri, Executive Director, Florida Department of Revenue. "Individuals who consistently fail to submit tax returns gain an unfair financial advantage over honest businesses that follow the law. It’s our job to ensure that Florida’s tax laws are administered fairly."

If you have information about tax crimes, please call the Florida Department of Revenue investigations office in Alachua at 386-418-4415.