Court documents lay out claims in pizzeria owners’ tax case
OCEAN CITY, N.J. (AP) -- Federal prosecutors claim the owners of a chain of landmark Jersey shore pizza places used money they allegedly hid from the government to maintain a lavish lifestyle, according to court documents filed in the case.
Manco and Manco owners Charles and Mary Bangle are accused of skimming $981,459 from their three Ocean City Boardwalk stores over a five-year period and of failing to pay $336,273 in taxes on that income.
The government claims the couple took the money from the strictly cash business, which generates in excess of $4.5 million a year. The couple maintains their innocence, and their lawyers are seeking the dismissal of most of the charges included in a 30-count indictment handed up last year.
The court documents show federal investigators traced $770,000 of the unreported funds to credit card charges for personal living expenses that included $40,000 for country club dues and memberships, $76,000 for tuition and tutoring for Charles Bangle's daughter and $70,000 in vehicle costs.
They also cite credit card charges for travel to Paris, Las Vegas, Hawaii and California, among other locations, with stays in luxury hotels. They also say fees for resort spas were found, along with purchases of high-end watches, jewelry, shoes and accessories, and thousands of dollars of wine shipped regularly from California.
Officials also claim Charles Bangle made 140 cash deposits totaling $340,000 between July 2009 and December 2011. The deposits were made two or three times weekly to personal bank accounts and ranged from $4,000 to $8,000, amounts that are below the $10,000 threshold for federal reporting requirements.