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Freeport auto repair owner pleads guilty to tax evasion

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The owner of two Freeport auto repair shops pleaded guilty to underreporting more than $8 million in taxable sales on March 26.

State Attorney General Letita James and Tax Commissioner Michael Schmidt said Luis Crespo — of Freeport, owner of Broadway Towing and Broadway Auto & Towing, Inc. — had been evading taxes for more than a decade.  

Along with tax evasion, Crespo also pleaded guilty to petit larceny. He has agreed to repay the state more than $900,000 in restitution, interest and penalties, of which he has already paid $160,000.

Nassau District Court also sentenced Crespo to a three-year conditional discharge.

"Today’s convictions should serve as a clear reminder that we will never tolerate those who seek to defraud our state out of its owed tax revenue, especially as we continue to face budget shortfalls,” James said. “The lights have finally dimmed on Broadway Towing’s fraud."

“Business owners who tilt the playing field for their own personal gain not only violate the trust of their community, they rob it of critical funding for public programs and services,” added Schmidt. “This is hundreds of thousands of dollars that would have helped improve lives in local neighborhoods, but instead they were siphoned off for personal profit.”

James Druker, Crespo's defense attorney, said his client admitted his guilt and had agreed to pay his liability.