SYRACUSE, NEW YORK – A federal grand jury returned an indictment yesterday charging John Zourdos, age 67, Helen Zourdos, age 63, and Dimitrios Zourdos, age 37, all of Rome, New York, with felony counts of conspiracy to defraud the IRS, tax evasion, and aiding and assisting in the filing of false tax returns. The indictment was announced by Acting United States Attorney Antoinette T. Bacon, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman of the Justice Department’s Tax Division, and Jonathan D. Larsen, Special Agent in Charge of the New York Field Office of Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation (“IRS-CI”).
The indictment alleges that John and Helen Zourdos own three Dippin Donuts stores in Central New York—two in Rome and one in New Hartford—and that they operate these stores with the assistance of their son, Dimitrios Zourdos. The indictment further alleges that between 2013 and 2017, John, Helen, and Dimitrios concealed more than $1 million in cash sales from the IRS by depositing cash directly into their personal bank accounts instead of their business bank accounts and by providing incomplete information to their accountant and causing the accountant to file false individual and corporate tax returns with the IRS. The indictment further alleges that the defendants committed employment tax fraud by paying employees some of their wages “off the books” in cash.
If convicted, the defendants face a maximum sentence of five years in prison for the conspiracy charge and each count of tax evasion, and three years in prison for each false return charge. The defendants also face up to three years of supervised release after conviction, as well as monetary penalties including restitution.
The charges in the indictment are merely accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
This case is being investigated by IRS-CI, and it is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael F. Perry along with Assistant Chief John Kane and Trial Attorney Kimberly Ang of the Department of Justice Tax Division.