Former Middlesex Diner co-owner charged for tax evasion

A Carlisle man allegedly dodged three years’ worth of employment taxes by failing to report a portion of wages paid to employees at a diner he owned in Cumberland County.

Angel Oliva was part owner of Middlesex Diner, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. He allegedly evaded about $809,000 in employment taxes between 2011 and 2014.

He is no longer associated with the business.

Oliva, who has filed a plea agreement, declined to comment. A message left with Oliva’s attorney Friday was not returned.

Middle District officials listed Oliva’s case in a news release warning “potential tax cheats” about the consequences of sidestepping the law.

“During this time of the year, IRS will receive millions of tax returns from honest taxpayers who file their returns on time and pay all the taxes they owe,” U.S. Attorney Bruce Brandler said in the release. “Today’s warning is not for them; it is for tax cheats who break tax laws and abuse our tax system. If you belong in this category, pay close attention. My office will hold accountable anyone who participates in a tax fraud scheme that puts an added tax burden on honest taxpayers and drains our public finances.”

The announcement goes on to list several other tax-related crimes the court has prosecuted in recent months. Other cases with local ties include the following:

  • Theodore and Arminda Martin, formerly of York County, were both sentenced to one year and one day imprisonment in October for failing to report more than $786,000 they received from operating two Ohio cemeteries between 2008 and 2011. They were ordered to pay $304,837 in restitution. (In a separate case, the Martins were recently the subject of a federal investigation after they allegedly failed to provide paid-for services at Suburban Memorial Gardens, another cemetery they owned in Conewago Township, York County.)
  • Paul Biko, of Harrisburg, was sentenced in September to 18 months’ imprisonment and ordered to pay $437,336 in restitution for tax fraud. Biko owned three Harrisburg-area businesses: Clearview of Harrisburg, Clearview Landscaping and Clearview Builders. These companies withheld employment tax from employees’ paychecks but failed to pay necessary taxes to the IRS for the fourth quarter of 2008.
  • Joel Fuller, formerly of Hazleton, was charged in September for failing to remit $180,000 in federal payroll taxes to the IRS. Fuller owned and operated two Hazleton-area marketing businesses that sold time shares to prospective clients on behalf of vacation companies. He is scheduled to plead guilty and be sentenced in June.

Jennifer Wentz
Jennifer Wentz covers Lancaster County, York County, financial services, taxation and legal services. Have a tip or question for her? Email her at jwentz@cpbj.com.

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