MANDEVILLE -Opening Cuts Plus salons in Mandeville and Covington almost 15 years ago was a dream for Donna Waguespack Ramon.But in 2006, she says it became a nightmare caused by someone she trusted.
'The IRS showed up at my business just unannounced and explained to me that my 940s and my 941s were not paid. And I said I have no clue what you're talking about but we'll call our accountant and figure it out,' she said, 'He said I've been trying to get in touch with your accountant for months.'
It was discovered that her accountant, Tony Tulli, had collected almost $45,000 in payroll tax money from Ramon, but kept it, instead of turning it over to the IRS.When Tulli pleaded guilty to mail fraud, in connection with the scheme, in October 2011, he also pleaded guilty to similar schemes against two other Northshore businesses, and stealing, in total, more than $1 million.He was sentenced to 41 months in federal prison a year ago, but today, Ramon says the IRS is treating her like the criminal.
'They have seized bank accounts on us, they have liened every piece of property that I own, that I cannot sell.I cannot borrow against it,' she said, 'They're not trying to collect, but they've got me in a gridlock where I can do nothing.'