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A Nevada restaurant owner pleaded guilty today to tax evasion.

According to court documents and statements made in court, Raul Gil, 63, owned and operated three Casa Don Juan restaurants in Las Vegas. From 2014 through 2018, Gil directed his bookkeeper to prepare false books and records for Gil’s restaurants that underreported cash sales at the restaurants by approximately $5.1 million. Gil then provided the false records to his tax return preparer, who annually prepared the Casa Don Juan corporate tax returns and Gil’s individual tax returns. As a result, the Casa Don Juan corporate tax returns were false for each of these years. Because the restaurant profits flowed through to Gil personally, his individual income tax returns for these years were false as well. Finally, because Gil directed the three restaurants to underreport their total sales, the Nevada sales tax returns for the restaurants also were false during these years.

In July 2018, the IRS initiated an audit of Gil. During the audit, Gil instructed his accountant to provide to the IRS false profit and loss statements that matched the figures reported on the tax returns. Gil also directed his bookkeeper to provide to the IRS false daily cash and sales reports purportedly printed from the restaurants’ point-of-sale systems. During interviews with the IRS, Gil falsely stated to the revenue agent conducting the audit, and later to IRS-Criminal Investigation special agents, that the falsified daily cash reports and point-of-sale records were accurate.

In total, Gil caused a tax loss to the IRS of approximately $1.6 million.

“Owners of restaurants that conduct a large number of cash transactions have to report all of their income, just like everyone else,” said Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General Stuart M. Goldberg of the Justice Department’s Tax Division. “We will investigate and prosecute those who shortchange their honest competitors and fellow citizens by willfully evading these laws.”

“In today’s challenging economic environment, it’s more important than ever that the American people feel confident that everyone is playing by the rules and paying the taxes they owe,” said IRS-Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge Albert Childress. “Those Americans who file accurate, honest and timely returns can be assured that the government will hold accountable those who don’t.”

Gil is scheduled to be sentenced on November 10 and faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison for tax evasion. He also faces a period of supervised release, restitution, and monetary penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

IRS-Criminal Investigation is investigating the case.

Trial Attorneys Thomas Flynn and Jacob Green of the Tax Division and Assistant U.S. Attorney Eric Schmale of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Nevada are prosecuting the case. Former Trial Attorneys Michael Landman and Stephen Moulton of the Tax Division also provided valuable assistance.

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