Yet another huge reminder to avoid breaking tax laws has recently popped up in the headlines. This one comes in the form of a Bay City Head Shop owner who is facing a 5 year felony charge, after police alleged that he was in possession of illegal tobacco.
In case you aren’t familiar with what a head shop is, it’s a shop that sells tobacco related products. These stores generally don’t sell just tobacco products only. They also sell things like tobacco smoking devices such ass glass pipes, glass bongs, as well as vaping related goods like e cigarette products, and vape juice. Most of these products are highly regulated by tobacco tax laws, and are subject to certain sales tax and licensing standards that must be followed by vendors of the goods.
This story dates back to April of 2014, when the Tobacco Tax Act team run by the Michigan State Police were doing mandatory checks on local shops that sell Tobacco, and they stopped at ‘3 doors down tobacco’. After finding some tobacco that didn’t appear have stamps on it, they ran some checks on the invoices of the tobacco products purchased which led to the discovery that it was purchased from an unlicensed distributor in Wisconsin. According to Michigan State Police, the Head Shop was unable to provide any evidence that they had indeed paid any sales tax on the tobacco at question.
After learning of the alleged tax violation, The State Tax Team spent an entire year investigating the head shop, and it’s owner
I think this is just another example of someone who maybe got too greedy. Building a successful business can tough, but it’s important we do our best to make the right decisions when it comes to tax and legal matters.