April 10, 2018

Orange landscaping biz owner sentenced to prison for tax evasion

The owner of an Orange landscaping business will spend two months in prison for failing to pay more than $67,000 in federal taxes, authorities said.

Thomas Capecelatro, 64, of Orange pleaded guilty in November to one count of willful failure to account for and pay employment taxes, according to the Connecticut U.S. Attorney's Office.

On Friday, U.S. District Judge Michael Shea in Hartford sentenced him to 60 days in prison followed by one year of supervised release, officials said.

Between 2010 and 2013, Capecelatro withheld more than $42,000 in payroll taxes from workers at his business, Chestnut Ridge Landscapers, but never turned the money over to the IRS, according to officials.

Prosecutors said he failed to file quarterly employment tax returns and skipped out on more than $24,000 in federal employment taxes and more than $1,300 in unemployment taxes the business owed during those years.

Capecelatro repaid the IRS $67,759.46 in back taxes last May, but authorities said he still owes penalties and interest on that sum, along with additional unpaid taxes, interest and penalties for the third quarter of 2005 through the third quarter of 2010.

Capecelatro is free on bond and will report to prison on June 6.

Natalie Missakian can be reached at news@newhavenbiz.com

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