ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – La Popular Bakery’s owner has issued a statement after their main Abilene restaurant was seized by the state.

Ricardo Arias issued the statement on social media Tuesday afternoon after signs were posted on the La Popular Bakery location on the 1500 block of Pine Street, saying the restaurant had been seized by the Texas Comptroller’s Office due to “nonpayment of taxes”.

Arias says that the COVID-19 pandemic caused his business to take a hit financially and that the IRS is not accounting for the lost sales.

He says he made the decision to let the State shut him down because he could not pay what they are claiming he owes in 21 days.

Read his full statement as it appears on social media below:

“My name is Ricardo Arias, iam the owner of La Popular Bakery on pine just to clear up all these rumors that you people will start up as people normally do !! I have been dealing with the State Comptroller doing a Audit for the last 12 years ,first year was 94 thousand dollars they said I owed them due too not reporting enough sales tax, so I paid it the second Audit said i owed 59 thousand ,again I paid it the 3rd Audit said I owed 120 thousand, so I waited to see if I could get some time to pay these taxes but things kept coming up on my end so I couldn’t pay them on time so I got behind 2 months on my taxes plus the Audit amount of 120 thousand plus 30 thousand add to that made it 150 thousand I had to pay in 21 days so I decided to let rhem shut my doors ,people need to understand I owed 2 locations in Abilene for over 25 years south 14th was one of the locations it was sold ,so I no longer made the amount of money I used make 13 years ago , due to closing down 14th st , also after the Pandemic hit I started to close Pine st on Mondays and also closing at night times. I went from making almost 200 to 300 thousand a month to making 1000 to 70 thousand a month so all being said I got hit with my 3rd Aduit and the State Comptroller once again claiming iam not reporting enough sales, I can’t report what iam not making I’ve lost 14th and close several days a month and no longer open night times , so they wanted me to pay 120 plus thousands of dollars in 21 days so I decided to let them close my doors till I decide what to do and not get my self in a bigger position and have to pay more taxes than I need to due to penalty fees and late fees, I can only do what is right for my family and that is to keep us above water before we drown in taxes.”

KTAB and KRBC have reached out to the Texas Comptroller’s Office to get more information about the amount of taxes owed and what will happen to the seized property.

It appears all other La Popular Bakery restaurants in Abilene are open for business as usual.

Stick with BigCountryHomepage.com for any additional information.