Linwood man admits to conspiring to evade payroll tax, personal and corporate taxes


Date: June 21, 2022


Camden, NJ — A Linwood, New Jersey man pleaded guilty today to failing to pay the IRS approximately $208,448 in taxes.

Ernesto Cannuscio pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Karen M. Williams and pled guilty to conspiracy to evade income taxes. Sentencing is scheduled for October 25, 2022.

"Business owners have an obligation to properly report all of the income earned whether paid in cash, check or credit card," stated Tammy Tomlins, Acting Special Agent in Charge, IRS Criminal Investigation, Newark Field Office. "Failing to intentionally report income and paying employees cash off the books to evade taxes will not go unpunished."

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

Between October 2013 and September 2018, Ernesto Cannuscio was a 50% owner and operator of Mario's Pizza, a well-known and popular pizza restaurant in Ocean City, New Jersey. Mario's Pizza accepted cash and credit card payments for service at the restaurant. Cannuscio failed to deposit significant amounts of the cash receipts into the Mario's Pizza's corporate bank account. Cannuscio used a portion of the cash receipts to pay employees cash wages off the books. Cannuscio provided the accountant with the business bank account statements, knowing they did not contain the unreported cash receipts. Cannuscio did not tell his accountant about the cash receipts, nor did he tell the accountant about the cash payroll to Mario's Pizza's employees. Failing to tell the accountant about the unreported cash receipts caused the accountant to underreport the gross receipts on the corporate tax returns as well as the flow through income which should have been reported on Cannuscio's personal tax return. In addition, Cannuscio evaded employment taxes by not informing the accountant about the cash wages paid to employees.

In total, Cannuscio defrauded the government of approximately $208,448 in taxes due and owing to the government.

The conspiracy to evade taxes to which Ernesto Cannuscio pleded guilty carries a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison and total potential fine of $250,000.

The investigation was conducted by Special Agents of IRS Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge Tammy Tomlins and the U.S. Attorney's Office, under the direction of U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jason M. Richardson of the U.S. Attorney's Office Civil Rights Division in Camden.