H+H OWNER INDICTED

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Helmer Toro, owner of the legendary H+H Bagels, was indicted and charged with tax fraud Nov. 18.

Outgoing Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau said the bagel magnate stole withholding taxes—taxes taken out of employees’ paychecks—and evaded unemployment insurance tax. The tax charges are in connection with H+H Bagels’ retail store at 2239 Broadway and West 80th Street, as well as the company’s wholesale operation.

The district attorney’s investigation alleges that Toro collected but failed to pay $369,318 in payroll taxes. Toro is also accused of creating six shell organizations to get a lower unemployment insurance tax rate by moving a large number of workers between these fake companies. He is charged on two counts of violating labor law.

On May 29, two H+H Bagels stores, including the famed Broadway location, closed for three hours when the state department of taxation seized the business. H+H Bagels was allowed to reopen after paying the liability.

Toro was arraigned in State Supreme Court Nov. 18 and pled not guilty. He surrendered his passport and was released on his own recognizance. He is due back in court Dec. 4.

As of Nov. 23, the Broadway outpost was still open.

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