Owners of three Bay Area restaurants charged with tax evasion, labor law violations

Three people have been arraigned in connection to tax evasion and labor law violations at Japanese restaurants in San Jose, Concord and Daly City that they owned and operated.

David Tai Leung, Sunny Siukeung Chan and Wendy Lai Ip are charged with stealing more than $893,000 in wages from their employees and evading $287,697 in sales taxes and $171,820 in employment taxes.

They were arraigned last week in Sacramento Superior Court, according to a statement from California Attorney General Rob Bonta.

The three defendants were the owners, operators, and the certified public accountant of Kome Japanese Seafood Buffet in Daly City, Tomi Japanese Seafood and Grill in San Jose, and Tomi Japanese Seafood Buffet in Concord.

They are facing 65 counts, including filing a false tax return with intent to evade paying taxes, failure to pay unemployment insurance and training taxes, failure to pay disability insurance, failure to collect and pay income tax, and grand theft of labor.

The allegations occurred between 2012 and 2018, according to the criminal complaint in the case.

One defendant surrendered to the Sacramento County Sheriff's Office last week, two defendants were remanded into custody on the arrest warrant at Wednesday's arraignment hearing.

The arrests and charges follow a lengthy investigation by the California Department of Justice, the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration, the California Department of Industrial Relations, the Employment Development Department, and other government agencies, according to a statement from Bonta.

"We take our responsibility to protect working people and taxpayer money seriously, and look forward to proving these allegations in court,'' Bonta  said in the statement.