Taney County Pizzeria Owner Gets Prison Time for Tax Evasion

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PROTEM, Mo. — The owner of Taney County pizzeria was sentenced to 18 months in federal prison Monday for tax evasion, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Missouri.

The release said Tony E. Cowden, 63, confessed his crimes to undercover federal agents who posed as buyers when his business was for sale.

Cowden, who operated Tony’s Pizza House in Protem, pleaded guilty to five counts of tax evasion in August, the release said.

According to the release, from 2008 to 2015, Cowden encouraged customers to pay in cash by offering discounts for cash payments, then skimmed money from those sales at the pizzeria.

Cowden owes more than $100,000 in federal and state taxes, the release said, and he will have to pay restitution to the IRS,  the state of Missouri and the Social Security Administration.

(Story shared by Springfield News-Leader. Read the original article here.)

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