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August 25, 2010

Fort Myers Auto Repair Shop Owner Arrested

The Florida Department of Revenue announced that Berthony "Tony" Zamilus, the owner of Blessing Auto Repairs, was arrested by the Charlotte County Sheriff's Department on August 5, 2010. Mr. Zamilus was arrested on a felony charge relating to theft of state funds. If convicted, he faces up to 5 years in prison and up to $5,000 in fines, as well as possible payment of tax, interest, penalty and investigative costs. Mr. Zamilus' shop was located at 3005 Cleveland Avenue in Fort Myers.

According to Revenue Department investigators, Mr. Zamilus routinely collected tax from customers at his business. However, during various periods between February 2006 and August 2009, he failed to file the required tax returns and remit the funds due.

"Most Florida businesses do an excellent job of meeting the state's requirements for collecting and submitting sales tax, which pays for services Floridians need," said Lisa Echeverri, Executive Director, Florida Department of Revenue. "Individuals who consistently fail to submit tax returns gain an unfair financial advantage over honest businesses that follow the law. It's our job to ensure that Florida's tax laws are administered fairly."

If you have information about tax crimes, please call the Florida Department of Revenue investigations office in Ft. Myers at 239-338-2425.