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Press Release

Chicago Restaurateur Sentenced to a Year and a Day in Federal Prison for Failing to Pay Taxes on More Than $9.8 Million in Cash Receipts

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

CHICAGO — The owner of several Chinese restaurants in the Chicago area was sentenced today to a year and a day in federal prison for withholding taxes by underreporting receipts paid in cash.

HU XIAOJUN, also known as “Tony Hu,” owns and operates several restaurants in Chicago and the suburbs, including the eateries operating under the Lao Sze Chuan brand.  From January 2010 to September 2014, Hu intentionally withheld sales taxes from the Illinois Department of Revenue and the city of Chicago for receipts that customers paid in cash.  Hu deposited the unreported cash into his personal bank account and used the money to pay personal expenses.

All told, Hu hid more than $1 million in taxes from state and local government from more than $9.8 million in cash sales.

Hu, 49, of Chicago, pleaded guilty in May to one count of wire fraud and one count of money laundering.  In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Judge Amy J. St. Eve also fined Hu $100,000.

“Business leaders like the defendant owe a special obligation to abide by our tax laws and pay their fair share,” Assistant U.S. Attorney William Ridgway argued in the government’s sentencing memorandum.  “When they fraudulently hide income it erodes the public’s trust in the tax system.”

The charges were announced by Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Michael J. Anderson, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and James D. Robnett, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division.

The government is represented by Mr. Ridgway.

Updated November 18, 2016