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Duluth Man Accused Of Spending $800,000 In Erroneous Checks From IRS

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010 at 9:47 am

A Duluth businessman is accused of cashing two checks totaling almost $800,000 and spending the money erroneously refunded to him by the Minnesota Department of Revenue.

The Duluth News Tribune reports that Kevin Charles Owens, 50, of Duluth is charged with four felonies:  theft, failure to pay over state funds, failure to pay income tax and failure to file a tax return.

Owens, who is the owner of Owens Yacht Sales in Duluth,  has been summoned to appear in court on Nov. 2.

According to the criminal complaint:

On March 18, 2008, the Department of Revenue issued two checks made payable to Owens Yacht Sales Inc., in the amounts of $560,980.12 and $221,982.06.

The department said the checks were issued erroneously “due to human error” and “somewhat complicated internal accounting errors.”

According to bank records, the checks were redeemed by the defendant on March 25, 2008.

A Revenue Department internal investigation found that the checks were inadvertently issued when its personnel were reviewing and attempting to correct old taxpayer account ledger systems.

The complaint alleges that Owens was notified of the erroneous refund and was repeatedly requested to return the funds or to make arrangement for payments, but refused to do so.

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