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ROCHESTER AUTO DEALER PLEADS GUILTY TO TAX FRAUD

FOR RELEASE:
IMMEDIATE, Wednesday 
July 26, 2006

New York State Commissioner of Taxation and Finance Andrew S. Eristoff today announced that a Rochester area auto dealer has pled guilty to criminal tax fraud charges and will face jail time in addition to making restitution to State taxpayers.

Antonio Costa, Owner of Rochester Auto Connection, located at 453 Ridge Road East, Rochester, NY, appeared before the Honorable Stephen K. Lindley in Rochester City Court and pled guilty to issuing a false or fraudulent statement with the intent to evade tax.

An investigation conducted by the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance concluded that Mr. Costa and Rochester Auto Connection willfully defrauded the State of sales tax that had been collected but not remitted. Mr. Costa intentionally understated Rochester Auto Connection’s taxable sales by $1,486,196 with a corresponding sales tax liability of $119,172.

Commissioner Eristoff said, “The Tax Department encourages honest disclosure by citizens and voluntary compliance with tax laws. When unscrupulous taxpayers evade and defraud the system, honest taxpayers are penalized. We’ll continue to work vigorously to see that those who break the tax laws face serious consequences.”

As part of his plea, Mr. Costa agreed to serve a six month sentence of weekends in jail as well as make full restitution for the liability owed in addition to penalties and interest.

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Updated: November 18, 2010