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Press Release

Orange Landscaper Sentenced to Prison for Failing to Pay Over Employment Taxes to IRS

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Connecticut

John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that THOMAS CAPECELATRO, 64, of Orange, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea in Hartford to 60 days of imprisonment, followed by one year of supervised release, for failing to pay over more than $66,000 in employment taxes to the Internal Revenue Service.

According to court documents and statements made in court, CAPECELATRO has owned and operated an unincorporated landscaping business known as Chestnut Ridge Landscaping (“Chestnut Ridge”) since approximately 1984.  From approximately October 2010 through 2013, CAPECELATRO caused Chestnut Ridge to withhold $42,322.64 in payroll taxes from its employees but failed to truthfully account for and pay over that money to the IRS.  During that same period, CAPECELATRO failed to pay $24,089.28 in federal employment taxes and $1,347.54 in federal unemployment taxes that Chestnut Ridge owed.  Chestnut Ridge also failed to file quarterly employment tax returns (Forms 941) with the IRS.

The total tax loss to the U.S. Treasury from October 2010 through 2013 was $67,759.46.

On November 28, 2017, CAPECELATRO pleaded guilty to one count of willful failure to account for and pay over employment taxes.

In May 2017, CAPECELATRO made restitution of $67,759.46 for the delinquent taxes.  He owes additional penalties and interest on that amount, and additional restitution for unpaid taxes, interest and penalties for the third quarter of 2005 through the third quarter of 2010.

CAPECELATRO, who is released on bond, was ordered to report to prison on June 6.

This matter was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation Division.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Susan L. Wines.

Updated April 6, 2018