Prominent Allentown restaurateur Louie Belletieri has been accused of felony theft after the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue alleged that he failed to pay around $89,000 in sales tax that his business 1207 Corp. Inc. collected over the past several years.
Belletieri has run his family’s restaurant at Louie’s Restaurant and Catering since he took it over from his father in the mid-1980s.
According to the criminal complaint it’s alleged that Belletieri collected sales tax for both the bar and restaurant end of his business, but under reported the amount to the state by $89,340.87.
In the complaint, Belletieri did acknowledge to authorities that the amount was underpaid, but denied knowing it
. He made reference to point of sale equipment at the South Allentown restaurant that he believed may have been malfunctioning.
An audit of employee payroll taxes was also conducted but no discrepancies were found.
Louie’s remains open, but prior to the charges Belletieri had posted on social media that he intended to close the location at 2071 31st St SW, the restaurant’s second location in its history.
The plan was to have the location close in November, and move to an as-of-yet undisclosed location.
A woman answering the phone at Louie’s indicated that she believed the restaurant would be moving to Emmaus.
A message was left for Belletieri for comment.
He has a preliminary hearing scheduled for Sept. 30.