3 PM: Just in from the regional U.S. Attorney’s Office:
The former owner of three bars and restaurants in the Seattle area was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to eight months in prison, one year of supervised release, and $800,000 in restitution for multiple misdemeanor counts of failing to file tax returns, announced U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes.
Eric M. Galanti, 41, who now resides in Olympia, failed to file his business and personal tax returns between 2006 and 2012. Galanti owned several restaurants during that time including Alki Crab & Fish in West Seattle, the Admiral Pub in West Seattle, and Bourbon Jacks (aka Poppas Pub or Charlies Pub) in Kent.
At the sentencing hearing, U.S. District Judge Richard A. Jones said Galanti “enjoyed the lifestyle of the ‘rich and famous,’… but every single year when April 15th rolled around a light had to come on that you owed taxes…. This was a flagrant and ongoing offense.”
According to records filed in the case, the lengthy investigation by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division found that Galanti’s businesses were generating significant revenues, but he failed to keep accurate records. Bank records show two of the restaurants had deposits of more than $7.7 million between 2006 and 2011. While he failed to file and pay his taxes, Galanti enjoyed a lavish lifestyle: using forged tax documents to facilitate his purchase of a $400,000 yacht; taking expensive trips to Hawaii, Las Vegas, and the Caribbean; and paying more than $10,000 for Kenny Chesney concert tickets.
“As we approach tax day, Mr. Galanti’s sentence reminds us of our legal obligation to file complete and accurate tax returns with the IRS. Today, Mr. Galanti, who willfully failed to pay $800,000 in taxes, learned the consequences of neglecting his duty as an American and as a small business owner,” stated Special Agent in Charge Darrell Waldon of IRS Criminal Investigation. “Instead of paying taxes, Mr. Galanti rewarded himself with lavish vacations and a new yacht. His decision to ignore his civic responsibilities caught up with him today.”
The case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI). The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Norman Barbosa.
We have a request out for documents in the case. You might recall that one of the named local establishments, Alki Crab and Fish, closed five years ago after losing the Seacrest Boathouse concession space to Marination.
3:40 PM: After reading through additional documents provided on request by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, here’s what else we have learned: The sentence follows a plea agreement reached in January, related to an indictment from March 2016. In the plea agreement, Galanti pleaded guilty to five counts of failure to file corporate tax returns. In the defense memo prepared for the sentencing hearing, it’s noted that Galanti gave up running his own businesses in 2015 and went back to working for his father, and is living with his parents in Olympia.