ROME, N.Y. — The owner and operator of a Rome auto-sales business will serve five years’ probation and pay the state more than $70,000 after pleading guilty to sales-tax fraud.
Ricky Hoke, 61, of 4817 Humaston Road in Rome, had earlier been arraigned in Oneida County Court in January and pleaded guilty to a felony count of third-degree criminal tax fraud.
Hoke was charged with underreporting sales taxes he collected from customers at his business, Hoke Auto Sales, the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance said in a news release issued Friday.
Hoke Auto Sales is located at 930 Erie Boulevard West in Rome.
Hoke collected $70,732 in sales tax between December 2010 and August 2015, but failed to remit that amount to the state Department of Taxation and Finance as required by law, the department said.
As part of his sentence, the court ordered Hoke to pay the full amount to the state and serve five years probation.
“When merchants collect tax on automobile sales from customers and fail to remit the tax, they’re stealing from the state and the local communities who depend on the sales tax revenue to fund critical public programs and services,” Nonie Manion, acting tax commissioner, said in the release. “We thank the Oneida County District Attorney’s Office for prosecuting this case.”
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