Dave Eckberg was sentenced to serve five years of probation after pleading guilty to felony tax evasion charges relating to his work as promoter of Lumberjack Days.
Eckberg, 64, entered guilty pleas on May 7 to two felony counts of failing to pay sales and alcohol taxes and one count of failing to pay out-of-state entertainment taxes.
Washington County District Judge Susan R. Miles last week sentenced Eckberg to serve five years of probation. If probation is violated, a 15-month prison sentence hangs over Eckberg’s head.
Judge Miles also ordered Eckberg to cooperate with the transfer of the ownership of the name “Lumberjack Days” to the city of Stillwater for its future use and ownership by the city.
Eckberg was ordered to have no participation with organizing any community events or festivals, unless approved by his probation officer.
During the worthless checks investigation, Washington County Attorney Pete Orput turned state investigators on to the possible tax evasion.
The Department of Revenue put their investigation on hold while the Washington County Attorney’s Office prosecuted Eckberg on felony worthless checks charges in 2012.
Eckberg pleaded guilty last year to issuing worthless checks in the amounts of $20,000 to Icabod Productions, $10,000 to Stillwater Blue Line Boosters, $8,000 to two alcohol distributors. Eckberg was ordered to pay restitution and was sentenced to one year of probation, a $1,000 fine and 240 hours of community service.
After Eckberg pleaded guilty to worthless check charges, detectives with the IRS resumed their tax evasion investigation.
“White collar crime such as this is as pernicious and damaging to society as street crime,” Orput said in a prepared statement. “It makes victims of all of us as taxpayers.”
Orput praised the investigative work by the Washington County Sheriff’s office and the Minnesota Department of Revenue.
Want more local stuff?
Stillwater Current is on a mission to spread local news.
If you like what you see, try our daily email.