U.S. Department of Justice
United States Attorney
District of Hawaii

PJKK Federal Building (808) 541-2850
300 Ala Moana Blvd., Room 6-100 FAX (808) 541-2958
Honolulu, Hawaii 96850

                                                                                                                                     October 24, 2001

For Immediate Release

P R E S S   R E L E A S E

KENGO I. NOZAKI, age 61, was convicted yesterday by a federal jury of three counts of filing a false tax return following a four-week trial before Senior United States District Court Judge Alan C. Kay. The jury found that NOZAKI, presently the manager of Kengo's Seafood Buffet, filed false tax corporate tax returns for the year 1992 for Kapiolani Enterprises, Inc., dba, Kengo's Royal Buffet, and that he filed false individual tax returns for the years 1993 and 1994.

Elliot Enoki, United States Attorney for the District of Hawaii, said that according to evidence produced at trial, NOZAKI skimmed approximately $112,000 during 1992; $166,000 during 1993; and $68,000 during the first half of 1994 while he was the general manager of Kengo's Royal Buffet located on Kapiolani Boulevard. Several prior employees of Kengo's Royal Buffet testified that during this time period, NOZAKI skimmed profits from Kengo's Royal Buffet. According to trial evidence, the skimmed money was not reported on NOZAKI's personal tax returns or on the corporate tax return filed for 1992.

Judge Kay scheduled sentencing for February 11, 2002. Each of the three counts of filing a false income tax return carries a maximum sentence of three years incarceration and a fine of $250,000.   The United States Sentencing Guidelines generally determine the actual term of imprisonment.

The investigation of this case was conducted by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division. The prosecution was handled by Assistant United States Attorney J. Michael Seabright.

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