Everybuddy’s Casual Dining restaurant in Lyndon is back open for business as usual after being closed temporarily on Tuesday by agents from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
At least a dozen IRS agents - some of them armed and wearing tactical gear - arrived at the popular eatery located at 774 Main St. Tuesday morning with a search warrant and turned away arriving customers while they conducted their investigation.
The restaurant re-opened on Wednesday morning and co-owner Rick Hanks said Thursday that Everybuddy’s is staying open and that he appreciates the continuing support of his customers.
But Hanks, who owns and operates the restaurant with his sister Cathy Hanks, said he’s still trying to figure out what led the IRS to his business.
“They surrounded my sister’s house and my restaurant,” said Hanks on Thursday. “But we didn’t do anything wrong. We’re still trying to figure out what’s going on.”
Hanks said the agents called him to the restaurant at home when they arrived and that both he and his sister were questioned repeatedly.
“They said someone told them we were paying in cash,” said Hanks. “That’s a croc of s***. I pass out checks every week.”
Hanks said the agents went through “everything” inside the building and took pictures of “every corner” of the restaurant before seizing documents.
“They took everything they wanted,” said Hanks.
Hanks said the agents - most of whom were polite - were not clear about what will happen next - if anything.
“We just have to wait,” said Hanks. “They said it could be a year.”
Hanks, a U.S. Army and Vermont National Guard veteran who served in Iraq, opened the restaurant with his sister in 2008.
The federal agents were members of the U.S. Department of Treasury – IRS Criminal Investigation Division. The IRS is part of the U.S. Department of Treasury. The Criminal Investigation Division is responsible for the investigation of alleged violations of the federal tax code and related financial crimes.