Owner of Two Memphis Convenience Stores Pleads Guilty to Sales Tax Evasion

Monday, February 03, 2014 | 12:15pm

Memphis, Tenn. - Fadel Dumah, the owner of Northside Deli & Grocery and Skylake Food Mart, pled guilty Friday to two Class E felony counts of sales tax evasion.

The Special Investigations Section of the Tennessee Department of Revenue conducted the investigation that led to the guilty plea of Dumah, 45.

Shelby County Criminal Court Judge Paula Skahan accepted Dumah's guilty pleas. Since he was eligible, Dumah's sentence was deferred, and he was placed on judicial diversion by Judge Skahan. Dumah will be on supervised probation for three years.

In addition, Dumah was ordered to pay $70,710.21 restitution to the Tennessee Department of Revenue in $1,965 monthly installments over his probationary period.

"This investigation serves as a reminder that retailers are not entitled to use or keep sales tax monies," said Revenue Commissioner Richard H. Roberts. "Sales tax revenues collected by retailers are never property of the retailer. At all times these sales tax collections are property of our state and local governments and must be remitted to the state as required by law."

The Department of Revenue pursued this criminal case in cooperation with Shelby County District Attorney Amy P. Weirich's office. Citizens who suspect violations of Tennessee's revenue laws should call the toll-free tax fraud hot line at (800) FRAUDTX (372-8389).

The Department of Revenue is responsible for the administration of state tax laws and motor vehicle title and registration laws and the collection of taxes and fees associated with those laws. The Department collects about 87 percent of total state revenue. During the 2013 fiscal year, it collected $11.7 billion in state taxes and fees and more than $2.2 billion in taxes and fees for local governments. To learn more about the department, visit www.TN.gov/revenue.