Indiana News

Indiana restaurant owners charged with theft

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The owners of six Indiana restaurants have agreed to pay back $143,000 to the state after prosecutors charged them with theft.

Manuel Alonso and Rosalio Sanchez under-reported about $1.8 million dollars in restaurant sales between 2013 and 2015, according to Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry. The $143,000 represent unpaid taxes on those sales.

Curry announced Thursday that Alonso and Rosalio agreed to plead guilty to level 6 felony charges.

“If you are not properly reporting your sales and you’re not properly paying your taxes that are due to the state of Indiana, you are cheating the people of the state of Indiana and you are committing a crime,” Curry said.

The six restaurants named in court documents are located in Muncie, Indianapolis, Gas City and Fairmount.

Megan Bowman owns a salon next to La Cabana, a restaurant named in the report, near 96th Street and I-69.

“That surprises me,” Bowman said. “I don’t know if I know the owner, but whoever runs the place over there is a really nice guy.”

Court documents say investigators paid for meals and noticed employees didn’t ring anything up on the cash register. The Indiana Department of Revenue eventually subpoenaed tax returns and bank account information.

Prosecutors said in one restaurant, the staff opened the register more than 3200 times in one day but only recorded a sale 71 percent of the time.

An initial hearing for the case hasn’t been scheduled.

The staff at La Cabana told a 24-Hour News 8 reporter no one was available to speak to the reporter Thursday.