Former owners of Valley Teakwoods restaurants to serve time for tax fraud

May 5, 2023, 10:00 AM

(Pexels Photo)...

(Pexels Photo)

(Pexels Photo)

PHOENIX — The former owners of the East Valley’s Teakwoods restaurants were sentenced to pay nearly $2 million in restitution and spend time behind bars for tax fraud, authorities said Thursday.

George Krotonsky and Aubrey Sturdivant each previously pleaded guilty to one count of fraudulent schemes and artifices and two counts of filing a false tax return, the Arizona Department of Revenue said in a press release.

An investigation of two Teakwoods restaurants, one in Gilbert and one in Chandler, covering January 2013-October 2019 found that the owners were collecting sales tax from customers but keeping the money instead of remitting it to the Department of Revenue, according to the release.

The owners were also found to be withholding tax from employees’ paychecks and keeping the money.

Krotonsky was sentenced to 1.5 years in state prison followed by seven years of supervised probation.

Sturdivant was sentenced to nine months in Maricopa County Jail to be followed by seven years of supervised probation.

The owners were each fined $1,000 and ordered to pay joint restitution of just over $1 million. Krotonsky was ordered to pay another $920,000 because he owned and operated the business before Sturdivant became a co-owner.

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Former owners of Valley Teakwoods restaurants to serve time for tax fraud