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Business owner charged in tax evasion

An area business owner is being charged with a handful of felonies after the Missouri Department of Revenue reportedly caught him committing tax fraud.

Joseph McLain, 52, of Cadet, is charged with 12 felony counts of failure to furnish a sales tax return with the intent to defraud. He is also being charged with six felonies of filing a false sales tax return.

According to a probable cause statement, a special agent with the Missouri Department of Revenue Criminal Tax Investigation Bureau investigated McLain and found he had committed several offenses.

The report said McLain is the owner of Highway 21 Bar & Grill LLC, located at 16185 North State Highway 21 in Cadet. It also said the business specialized in serving food and drinks and it is required by law to collect sales tax on retail sales.

It states McLain failed to file tax returns for three quarterly periods ending September 30, 2016, December 31, 2016 and March 31, 2017. He also failed to pay sales tax for nine other quarterly periods ending March 31, 2015 through March 31, 2017.

McLain also filed false sales tax returns for six quarterly periods from March 31, 2015 through June 30, 2016. According to the Missouri Department of Revenue records, McLain has not attempted to pay the sales tax due to the state of Missouri since June 2016.

As a result of his actions, the state of Missouri has incurred a loss in the amount of $60,139.36. The report said that amount includes a calculation of sales tax due according to sales tax returns filed and an analysis of the financial records, interest, additions and fraud penalties.

McLain was taken into custody and was held on a $10,000 bond. 

Renee Bronaugh is a reporter for the Daily Journal and can be reached at 573-518-3617 or



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