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July 17, 2018

7/10/2018 7:29:00 AM
Boulder Junction business owner charged with tax fraud
Abigail Bostwick
of the Lakeland Times

Tax fraud and business theft charges have been filed against a Boulder Junction business owner already facing elder financial abuse allegations.

Amy Wheeler, 46, Boulder Junction, owner of The Outdoorsman Restaurant, will have a preliminary hearing in September in Vilas County Circuit Court on two felony charges of theft in a business setting under $5,000, four counts misdemeanor theft and two counts each filing fraudulent sales tax return and fail/file income tax return.

According to the criminal complaint, while investigating Wheeler for elder abuse for stealing money from her mother, a Vilas County Sheriff's Office detective discovered Wheeler failed to remit sales taxes that were collected in 2016-17. Wheeler reportedly filed only sales tax returns.

The Wisconsin Department of Revenue show Wheeler filed her 2010-14 income taxes late but timely filed her 2015 forms. As of May 2018, an income tax form had yet to be filed, court reports note.

The Outdoorsman registered with the WDOR as a corporation in 2001. Corporate returns were filed for 2001-15. Several were on time, while several were late. No corporate return had been filed as of the charges being filed in 2018.

Court records note the WDOR sent numerous letters of amounts due and correspondence replying to requests for extensions. Requests were denied and approved over various months.

Unpaid state and county sales tax include $1,208 in May 2017; $2,065 in June 2017; $3,738 in July 2017; $3,049 in August 2017; $2,046 in September 2017; and $1,580 in October 2017. Sales tax returns not filed included November and December 2017.

In another Vilas County case, Wheeler faces six counts of felony theft by trustee after allegedly using more than $539,000 for her own personal and business expenses from her mother's designated account.

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