Lenoir Trucker Guilty of State Fuel Tax Evasion

Date: 12/2/2003

RALEIGH – A Lenoir man pleaded guilty Monday in Wake County Superior Court to felony tax charges filed by the North Carolina Department of Revenue.

Tommy Mitchell Thompson, 50, of 3721 Blowing Rock Blvd., Lenoir, pleaded guilty to two counts of willfully attempting to evade or defeat the North Carolina motor fuels tax. It was while operating as a self-employed interstate motor carrier that Thompson failed to register and file motor fuels tax returns to report his mileage and fuel purchases throughout the United States.

The state's evidence showed that Thompson submitted fuel receipts to the Department of Revenue to document his fuel purchases. The Department contacted a number of the fuel vendors and found that many of the receipts were fraudulent. Thompson made false statements to a special agent from the Department's Criminal Investigations Division when confronted with the false documents.

Thompson appeared before Wake County Superior Court Judge Narley Cashwell and was sentenced to two, consecutive eight-month minimum, 10-month maximum prison terms. The sentences were suspended and he was placed on supervised probation for 36 months. Thompson was ordered to serve a 10-day active sentence in the Caldwell County jail as a special condition of probation. He was further ordered to pay a $1,000 criminal fine. Thompson paid $22,000 in restitution to the Department of Revenue immediately before his sentencing.

The charges against Thompson resulted from an investigation by an auditor with the Department of Revenue's Motor Fuels Tax Division a special agent with the Department's Criminal Investigations Division.

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