Dress-shop owner pleads guilty to keeping 4 years’ worth of state, county sales taxes

A woman who operates prom-dress shops in Raleigh and Durham was given a suspended prison sentence and put on three years' probation Tuesday after pleading guilty to embezzling state and county sales taxes in 2011 through 2014.

The state Department of Revenue had arrested Anh Van Shepard, 50, of 12132 Pawleys Mill Circle in Raleigh last August. She operates Chique Prom stores.

Warrants charged that she had kept $74,673.81 that should have been turned over to the state and Wake County.

The warrants charged her with multiple counts of embezzlement.

In addition to probation, Superior Court Judge Donald W. Stephens ordered Shepard to pay a $15,000 fine and to do 100 hours of community service in the next six months.

The Department of Revenue, which announced the conviction, said Shepard paid the state $75,000 before her court appearance.

Chique Prom has a store in Triangle Town Center in Raleigh and, according to its website, has opened one in The Streets of Southpoint in Durham since Shepard’s arrest.

Ron Gallagher: 919-829-4572, @RPGKT