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Apple Valley woman charged with multiple tax crimes

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ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Minnesota Department of Revenue announced that the Dakota County Attorney’s Office recently charged Rong Qiao Zheng, of Apple Valley, with three felony counts of knowingly aiding in the preparation of a fraudulent tax return and three felony counts of willfully underpaying sales tax.  

According to the complaint, Ms. Zheng is the owner of Super World Buffet, a restaurant located in Apple Valley, Minnesota. The complaint alleges that Ms. Zheng underreported taxable cash transactions made at her restaurant to her accountant who subsequently used that information to file the fraudulent sales tax and use tax returns on the restaurant’s behalf for multiple months from 2017 through 2019. The complaint states that the Ms. Zheng owes more than $138,000 in sales and use tax, penalties, and interest.

Each tax-related felony charge carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison, a $10,000 fine, or both. Defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Although most taxpayers comply with tax laws voluntarily, the department takes enforcement action against noncompliant taxpayers to ensure that tax laws are administered fairly.

Many of the department’s criminal case referrals come from public tips. There is a 24-hour tip line for anyone who suspects that a person or business is violating Minnesota tax laws. Local callers may dial 651-297-5195 or call toll-free by dialing 1-800-657-3500. Tips can also be submitted to the department by email at tax.fraud@state.mn.us. Tipsters may choose to remain anonymous. 

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Ryan Brown
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