Tennessee Department Of Revenue Investigation Results In Guilty Plea By East Ridge Business Owner
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The Special Investigations Section of the Tennessee Department of Revenue conducted the investigation that led to the indictment, arrest and subsequent conviction of Jerry Ray Chapman, former owner of Choo Choo Computer Forms, 5312 Ringgold Road, East Ridge, Tenn., on sales tax evasion charges. On April 3, 2007, Chapman pled guilty in Hamilton County Criminal Court to 13 counts of sales tax fraud. The court placed Chapman on five years probation and ordered him to make restitution to the state in the amount of $21,632.64.
“When sales tax is collected from the public and not remitted, it is a breach of the public trust,” said Commissioner Reagan Farr. “The Department of Revenue aggressively pursues criminal sanctions and demands accountability for such actions.”
Chapman was indicted by the Hamilton County Grand Jury on January 26, 2006, on 13 counts of sales tax fraud. The indictment charged that Chapman failed to file sales tax returns on behalf of Choo Choo Computer Forms for the periods September and October 2002, and July 2003 through May 2004. This was in violation of Section 67-1-1440(g) of the Tennessee Code Annotated.
Citizens who suspect violations of the Tennessee revenue laws should call the toll-free tax fraud hot line at (800) FRAUDTX (372-8389).
These cases are pursued criminally by the department in cooperation with local district attorneys general.
The Department of Revenue is responsible for the administration of state tax laws and motor vehicle title and registration laws established by the legislature and the collection of taxes and fees associated with those laws. The Department of Revenue collects approximately 92 percent of total state tax revenue. During the 2005-2006 fiscal year, the department collected $10.3 billion in state taxes and fees. In addition to collecting state taxes, $1.8 billion of local sales tax was collected by the department for local governments during the 2005-2006 fiscal year. Besides collecting taxes, the department enforces the revenue laws fairly and impartially in an effort to encourage voluntary taxpayer compliance. The department also apportions revenue collections for distribution to the various state funds and local units of government. To learn more about the department, log on to www.Tennessee.gov/revenue.