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March 5, 2014

Naples Patio Furniture Store Owner Arrested

Perry Arons, 54, owner of Patio World Home & Hearth, Inc., has been arrested on charges that he failed to file six consecutive tax returns, failing to account for and remit the sales tax he collected from his customers, the Florida Department of Revenue announced.

Mr. Arons, who lives in Naples, was arrested by the Collier County Sheriff's Department on February 28, 2014 on felony charges relating to his failure to file sales and use tax returns. If convicted, he faces up to 5 years in prison and up to $5,000 in fines, as well as possible repayment of stolen tax, interest, penalty, and investigative costs. Patio World Home & Hearth is located at 13230Tamiami Trail North in Naples.

According to Revenue Department investigators, Mr. Arons collected sales tax from customers of his business. However, during the period beginning in June of 2012 through May of 2013, he failed to send to the state sales tax returns and sales taxes that he had collected from his customers. Under state law, sales tax is the property of the state at the moment of collection.

"It is an honor to serve the vast majority of Florida businesses who comply with State tax requirements," said Marshall Stranburg, Executive Director, Florida Department of Revenue. "For those that don't, it is our job to enforce the law and ensure honest businesses are not placed at a competitive disadvantage by those who ignore the law or intentionally collect and steal taxpayer dollars."

If you have information about tax crimes, please call the Florida Department of Revenue investigations office in Naples at 239-434-4874.

Note: Due to the confidential nature of taxpayer records, generally the information found in this release is the only information available from the Department of Revenue concerning this matter. Other information may be available through the arresting agency and the local Clerk of Court.