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Rocky Point diner owner failed to pay employment taxes, feds say

The owner of the Rocky Point Town House Diner paid his workers in cash, without paying employment taxes, and now faces up to 5 years in federal prison, the U.S. Justice Department said Wednesday.

Nikolaos Avgoustidis, of Wading River, pleaded guilty to failing to pay employment taxes for any of his diner workers — a loss to the Internal Revenue Service of about $130,000 — and not paying Social Security, Medicare and other required taxes, the Justice Department wrote in a news release. Certain employees were paid in cash from 2011 to 2013, the release said.

According to online court records, Avgoustidis was charged May 13 with willful failure to collect and pay taxes, a felony. Court records indicate he was the diner manager and did its payroll.

Avgoustidis is to be sentenced Jan. 15, 2021, and faces mandated restitution and penalties, the release said. He is free pending sentencing, according to an order signed by U.S. District Judge Gary R. Brown.

The records did not list a defense attorney for Avgoustidis. A phone number found in public records for Avgoustidis rang unanswered Wednesday evening.

An employee at the diner said only the diner is under new ownership.

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