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June 4, 2014

Tampa Restaurant/Bar Owner Arrested

Scott C. Edelman, 43, owner of ME Entertainment & Restaurant LLC, doing business as Dale 1891, has been arrested on charges that he stole more than $36,000 in sales tax he collected from customers, but failed to send to the state, according to the Florida Department of Revenue.

Mr. Edelman, who lives in Tampa, was arrested by the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Department on June 2, 2014 on felony and misdemeanor charges relating to theft of state funds and refusal to file sales and use tax returns. If convicted, he faces up to 15 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines, as well as possible repayment of stolen tax, interest, penalty and investigative costs.

According to Revenue Department investigators, Mr. Edelman collected sales tax from customers of his business. However, during various periods beginning in November 2011 through October 2013, he failed to file sales tax returns and send to the state all of the 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. Dale 1891 is located at 11742 North Dale Mabry Highway in Tampa.

"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 Holiday at 727-938-2551.

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.