Brooklyn Bar Owner Sentenced to Prison After Scamming 100 Couples

Jason Stevens, the owner of Brooklyn bar and wedding venue reBar, was sentenced on Monday to serve as many as 10 years in prison for grand larceny and tax fraud. Earlier this year, Stevens abruptly shuttered reBar and disappeared with more than $1.3 million in wedding deposits belonging to at least 100 couples.

Stevens pleaded guilty in June to four felony counts of tax fraud and one count of grand larceny. He'll serve at least three and a half years in prison.

From the Wall Street Journal:

According to the Brooklyn prosecutors, Mr. Stevens collected about $200,000 in sales tax without sending it on to the state and didn't collect another $1.2 million in taxes between 2009 and 2012. Allan Bahn, an attorney for Mr. Stevens, said his client owes about $6 million to the state, including principal, interest and penalties on the tax liability.

Stevens reached a separate agreement with Brooklyn prosecutors to repay the $1.3 million he owes to couples who'd booked reBar for their wedding receptions. The agreement also bars Stevens from owning a restaurant or catering business.

"I have nothing left to give but an apology," Stevens said after his sentencing, according to the Wall Street Journal. "I'm so sorry."

[Image via dumbonyc/Flickr]