Cary Businessman Pleads Guilty To State Tax Evasion

Date: 4/29/2004

RALEIGH – A Cary businessman pleaded guilty Thursday in Wake County District Court to a tax charge filed by the North Carolina Department of Revenue.

Charles Kenneth Earnhardt, Jr., 31, of 3629 Wickersham Way, pleaded guilty on April 29, 2004 to one count of attempting to evade or defeat the North Carolina withholding tax.

Wake County District Court Judge Joyce Hamilton sentenced Earnhardt to a six-month minimum, eight-month maximum prison term. The sentence was suspended and Earnhardt was placed on supervised probation for 36 months. He was further ordered to pay a $400 criminal fine and to perform 20 hours of community service. Earnhardt paid $89,964 in restitution to the North Carolina Department of Revenue prior to court for withholding taxes he owed.

The state’s evidence showed that Earnhardt stopped filing reports and remitting the withholding taxes due for his business, Wake Plumbing Company which is located at 155 Wilkinson Avenue in Cary. From January 2002 through March 2003, Earnhardt withheld $89,964 in North Carolina individual income taxes from his employees’ wages that he did not remit to the Department of Revenue. Earnhardt admitted that he used the money to pay other business expenses.

The charges against Earnhardt resulted from an investigation by an auditor with the Raleigh Examinations Office and a special agent with the Department ’s Criminal Investigations Division.

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