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Chaska man charged with multiple tax crimes

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ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Minnesota Department of Revenue announced that the Ramsey County Attorney’s Office recently charged Thomas Brent Lawrence, of Chaska, with four felony counts of failing to file individual income tax returns and 13 felony counts of failing to pay sales tax.

According to the complaint, Mr. Lawrence failed to file his individual income tax return for tax years 2016 through 2019 despite earning enough income to be required to file a return in Minnesota. The complaint also states that, during multiple quarters between 2016 and 2020, Mr. Lawrence failed to remit sales tax to the state that was collected by his business, Epic Networks LLC. Mr. Lawrence allegedly collected and failed to remit more than $16,900 in sales tax.

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. 

Get the latest news and updates from the Minnesota Department of Revenue by following the department on Facebook and Twitter or by signing up for our email subscription list.

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Ryan Brown
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