Hamilton County Businessman Arrested On Liquor By The Drink And Sales Tax Evasion Charges

Friday, February 07, 2014

The Special Investigations Section of the Tennessee Department of Revenue conducted the investigation that led to the indictment and arrest of John Lewis Blewett, 68, of Chattanooga.  On Thursday, Department of Revenue Special Agents arrested Blewett at his business, Mirage Images. Bond was set at $5,000.

On Wednesday, the Hamilton County Grand Jury indicted Blewett on one Class E felony count each of liquor by the drink and sales tax evasion. The indictments charge that Blewett willfully attempted to evade liquor by the drink tax in an amount greater than $1,000 and sales tax in an amount greater than $1,000 by filing false tax returns from October 2007 through June 2010.

“The majority of businesses pay appropriate taxes,” said Revenue Commissioner Richard H. Roberts. “I hope this case will serve as a warning to others who think they can get away with tax fraud in Tennessee. We will continue to pursue criminal activity and prosecute tax evaders to assure fairness in our tax structure for Tennesseans.”

If convicted, Blewett could be sentenced up to a maximum of two years in the state penitentiary and fined $3,000 for each count of liquor by the drink and sales tax evasion.

Prosecution of this criminal case was pursued by the Department in cooperation with District Attorney General Bill Cox’s office. Citizens who suspect violations of Tennessee’s revenue laws should call the toll-free tax fraud hot line at (800) FRAUDTX (372-8389).

The Department of Revenue is responsible for the administration of state tax laws and motor vehicle title and registration laws established by the legislature and the collection of taxes and fees associated with those laws. It collects approximately 87 percent of total state revenue. During the 2013 fiscal year, the Department collected $11.7 billion in state taxes and fees and over $2.2 billion in taxes and fees for local governments.  To learn more about the Department, log on to www.TN.gov/revenue .


Vote No On Health Insurance Changes Affecting County Teachers

Our Hamilton County School Board will vote on insurance changes effecting both active employees and retirees, who are not on Medicare at this time.  HCEA strongly objects to changes being made at this time and urges a “No” vote.  Insurance had been frozen three years by negotiations.  Since the Educators Professional Negotiations Act was nullified by the 2011 Legislature, ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Al Sharpton’s Wise Remarks

I’ll admit I paid little more than scant attention to the Monday funeral of Michael Brown, the 18-year-old who was shot and killed by police bullets in Ferguson, Mo., after he allegedly was involved in strong-armed robbery. There are too many tawdry details and, in my way of thinking, there is nothing under God’s sun, absolutely nothing, that gives others the right to riot, burn ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Christian Sweeps Notre Dame In 7-AA Volleyball

 It didn't matter that the Chattanooga Christian volleyball team was on the road Tuesday night.  Who cared that they were playing one of their biggest rivals in District 7-AA in a loud and spirited Jack Steiner Sr. Gymnasium at Notre Dame High School. None of those factors came into play as the Lady Chargers were ready to play and the Lady Irish were not. The results ... (click for more)

Fulghum, Walker Power Soddy-Daisy Past Cleveland

Soddy-Daisy’s Lady Trojans shook off an up-and-down performance in last weekend’s Early Bird tournament at Oak Ridge and throttled Cleveland, 3-0, in a District 5-AAA volleyball match Tuesday at Soddy-Daisy High School. The Lady Trojans (8-4, 2-1) swept the match with set scores of 25-18, 25-22 and 25-15. Abby Walker and Karigan Fulghum combined for 30 digs and 18 kills to ... (click for more)