Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Hastings restaurant owners sentenced for tax evasion

A Hastings couple, who operated dairies, restaurants and other businesses, have been sentenced to prison and home detention on tax evasion charges totalling nearly a million dollars.

Rakesh and Nalini Kumar operated Red Chilli Restaurants and Take Away in Taradale and Indian Palace Restaurant in Napier together with dairies in Hastings and Mount Maunganui and other businesses.

Rakesh Kumar will spend two-and-a-half years in prison after pleading guilty to providing false returns and evading tax totalling $833,294.99. His wife, Nalini Kumar, has been sentenced to five months home detention and 100 hours community work after a guilty plea to evading $127,029.60 in tax.

Inland Revenue spokesperson Karen Whitiskie says the couple under-reported cash sales and paid employees under the table over several years.

“Between 2010 and 2016, Mr Kumar’s companies reported substantial losses for income tax and GST purposes. There were also an abnormally low number of cash sales recorded at a time when his bank records revealed substantial cash deposits.

“Mr Kumar also paid his employees in cash and didn’t list them on the Employer Monthly Schedules provided to Inland Revenue.”

Inland Revenue began looking in to Red Chilli restaurant after it showed abnormally low cash sales between 2009 and 2015. Indian Palace also had similar abnormally low cash sales between 2010 to 2015.

“In one year, the companies’ tax returns stated less than 1% of its sales were cash sales, compared to the industry average of 30%. Both restaurants PAYE returns also understated staff numbers, with Indian Palace claiming only one employee over the busy Christmas holiday season in 2010-2011,” Karen Whitiskie says.

“Defrauding Inland Revenue is not a victimless crime. It’s straight theft from the community and all too common. Concealing cash sales is just one part of the hidden economy, and an area of concern for us.

“The overall harm is more than just the tax shortfall because Inland Revenue relies heavily taxpayer honesty. Deliberate offending like that committed by Rakesh and Nalini Kumar undermines that relationship and damages the integrity of the tax system.

“As the Court of Appeal has said (R v James), nothing is more corrosive than the sight of people apparently earning high income and evading payment of tax.”

© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Up 0.5% In June Quarter: Services Lead GDP Growth

“Service industries, which represent about two-thirds of the economy, were the main contributor to GDP growth in the quarter, rising 0.7 percent off the back of a subdued result in the March 2019 quarter.” More>>


Pickers: Letter To Immigration Minister From Early Harvesting Growers

A group of horticultural growers are frustrated by many months of inaction by the Minister who has failed to announce additional immigrant workers from overseas will be allowed into New Zealand to assist with harvesting early stage crops such as asparagus and strawberries. More>>


Non-Giant Fossil Disoveries: Scientists Discover One Of World’s Oldest Bird Species

At 62 million-years-old, the newly-discovered Protodontopteryx ruthae, is one of the oldest named bird species in the world. It lived in New Zealand soon after the dinosaurs died out. More>>

Rural Employers Keen, Migrants Iffy: Employment Visa Changes Announced

“We are committed to ensuring that businesses are able to get the workers they need to fill critical skills shortages, while encouraging employers and regions to work together on long term workforce planning including supporting New Zealanders with the training they need to fill the gaps,” says Iain Lees-Galloway. More>>


Marsden Pipeline Rupture: Report Calls For Supply Improvements, Backs Digger Blame

The report makes several recommendations on how the sector can better prevent, prepare for, respond to, and recover from an incident. In particular, we consider it essential that government and industry work together to put in place and regularly practise sector-wide response plans, to improve the response to any future incident… More>>