Owner of Fermental charged with embezzling sales tax money

Owner of Fermental charged with embezzling sales tax money
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WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - The owner of Fermental has been arrested on felony tax charges filed by the N.C. Department of Revenue.

Steven Ronald Gibbs, 44, of Wilmington, was charged on June 24 with four counts of embezzlement of state property and four counts of embezzlement of New Hanover County Property.

Arrest warrants allege that Gibbs, owner of Fermental, Inc., aided and abetted the business to embezzle, misapply, and convert to its own use $44,059.20 in State and New Hanover County Sales Tax during the period September 1, 2014 through September 20, 2017.

During this period of time, Gibbs was the responsible person of Fermental, Inc., which was under a duty to collect, hold in trust, and remit North Carolina State and New Hanover County Sales Tax to the North Carolina Department of Revenue.

Gibbs appeared before a Wake County magistrate and was placed under a $50,000 bond. A first appearance is scheduled for June 25 in Wake County District Court in Raleigh.

The charges against Gibbs resulted from an investigation by special agents with the N.C. Department of Revenue’s Criminal Investigations Section in Raleigh.

According to Fermental’s website, the shop, located at 7250 Market Street, “sells and serves an eclectic selection of craft beer and fine wine” and is situated in a “1940’s bungalow with a unique assortment of rooms and seating areas.”

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