Oshima Sushi in Everett, Washington on Wednesday, Sept. 6, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

Oshima Sushi in Everett, Washington on Wednesday, Sept. 6, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

Everett, Lynnwood sushi restaurant owner accused of $1.7M tax evasion

Si Yong Kim allegedly reported false numbers to the IRS, resulting in over $500,000 in lost taxes between 2016 and 2020.

EVERETT — The owner of popular sushi restaurants in Lynnwood and Everett kept a “double set of books” to hide his true business earnings from the Internal Revenue Service, new charges filed in federal court say.

Federal prosecutors allege Si Yong Kim, owner of the two Oshima Sushi restaurants in Everett and Lynnwood, understated his proceeds by over $1.7 million between 2016 and 2020, resulting in a tax loss upwards of $500,000. He deposited earnings into three personal accounts, and the rest in a safe deposit box. The money was partly used to finance his properties in Georgia and Mukilteo, according to the charges filed last week.

Kim faces one count of tax evasion in U.S. District Court in Seattle.

Workers at both restaurants Thursday said Kim was unavailable to comment on the charges.

Kim has owned both sushi establishments for about a decade at 11108 Evergreen Way and inside H Mart at 3301 184th St. SW, according to business license records. He took an active role in the day-to-day operation and handled the bookkeeping — which he reportedly had done by hand, according to court documents.

Prosecutors allege Kim gave his tax preparer false earnings to provide to the IRS for four years, resulting in a $511,750 in total tax loss.

Federal court documents list both Oshima locations under the name “Si Joy Inc.” The court records say the Everett restaurant filed taxes under the name “Si Joy,” while the Lynnwood business filed taxes as “Oshima Sushi.”

For both Oshima establishments, Kim kept one set of books in which he accurately reported daily expenses, cash receipts, credit card receipts and tips. The restaurant owner would then write a “CPA number” next to the accurate figures, omitting all cash receipts and understating credit card receipts by thousands of dollars, the charges say.

Kim would provide that false number every month as the monthly gross receipts for each restaurant, prosecutors allege. He would also direct his tax preparer to use those numbers to prepare tax returns for the businesses.

A second set of books Kim used to mimic the first set only listed two numbers a day: an accurate report of credit card receipts and 10% of the cash receipts, according to the charges.

During an IRS investigation last year, Kim told agents his restaurants generated mostly credit card receipts, according to court documents.

When asked if he ever received cash, he reportedly replied: “Hardly, not much.”

Prosecutors also allege Kim “significantly overstated” his expenses on end-of-year reports, doubling the cost of his vendors. At the same time, the sushi restaurant owner would pay some of his employees in cash without reporting it to his tax preparer, understating his labor expenses.

“Kim knew federal tax law imposed a duty on him, and Kim intentionally and voluntarily violated that duty,” prosecutors wrote in the charges.

Court records suggest Kim did not have legal representation in the case as of this month.

Both restaurants were open Friday.

The Oshima location in Everett shares a wall with Zab Thai, where then-owner Kay Fuengarom was sentenced to two years of probation in 2019, for a tax fraud scheme using software to underreport how much the restaurant made.

Zab Thai also remained open this week, though Fuengarom was no longer listed as part of the ownership in state records.

Maya Tizon: 425-339-3434; maya.tizon@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @mayatizon.

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Local News

Fraudulent 1999 Pokémon cards Iosif “Joe” Bondarchuk and Anthony Curcio sold to an undercover law enforcement purchaser in July 2023. (Photo provided by the DOJ USAO Southern District of New York)
Counterfeit Pokémon cards, a $2M scheme, and a getaway by inner tube

It was the latest stranger-than-fiction caper tied to ex-Monroe star athlete Anthony Curcio, accused of forging mint grades for rare cards.

A Mukilteo Speedway sign hangs at an intersection along the road in Mukilteo. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Mukilteo Speedway name change is off to a bumpy start

The city’s initial crack at renaming the main drag got over 1,500 responses. Most want to keep the name.

Suspected DUI crash injures trooper on I-5 north in Lynnwood

WSP spokesperson said two suspected impaired drivers have crashed into a state trooper in the past 24 hours.

Logo for news use featuring the municipality of Mountlake Terrace in Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
Police: Man shot at ex-girlfriend, child in Mountlake Terrace apartment

Officers were investigating the Seattle man, 22, for first-degree assault, reckless endangerment and third-degree malicious mischief.

Former President Donald Trump exits the courthouse after being found guilty of all counts in his criminal trial at New York State Supreme Court in New York, on Thursday, May 30, 2024. Trump has been convicted of falsifying records to cover up a sex scandal that threatened his ascent to the White House in 2016, part of a scheme that prosecutors described as a fraud on the American people. He is the first American president to be declared a felon. (Doug Mills/The New York Times)
Trump convicted on all counts to become America’s first felon president

Twelve New Yorkers delivered their verdict in the case against Donald J. Trump. He was charged with 34 counts of falsifying business records in connection with a payment to a porn star.

The view of Mountain Loop Mine out the window of a second floor classroom at Fairmount Elementary on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2024 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
After months of controversy, mine’s Everett gravel yard is for sale

In April, a county judge ordered OMA Construction to stop all work, next door to Fairmount Elementary School. Now, the yard is on the market.

Traffic moves along Highway 526 in front of Boeing’s Everett Production Facility on Nov. 28, 2022, in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Boeing agrees to pay over $11.5M in back pay to employees

Nearly 500 workers received back wages, in what Washington regulators call the largest-ever settlement of its kind in state history.

The I-5, Highway 529 and the BNSF railroad bridges cross over Union Slough as the main roadways for north and southbound traffic between Everett and Marysville. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Highway 529 closure between Everett and Marysville delayed by weather

The key alternative route to I-5 was slated to be fully closed overnight Saturday. Now, June 8 is being circled as the date.

Benson Boone (Photo provided by AEG Presents)
Taylor Swift taps Monroe HS grad Benson Boone to open London show

Boone, 21, has become a global pop star since his “American Idol” stint in 2021. “Beautiful Things” is the biggest song in the world.

News logo for use with stories about Mill Creek in Snohomish County, WA.
Mill Creek man accused of crashing into taxi in Seattle, killing woman

King County prosecutors charged Aboubacarr Singhateh with vehicular homicide and three counts of vehicular assault.

Grayson Huff, left, a 4th grader at Pinewood Elementary, peeks around his sign during the Marysville School District budget presentation on Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2023 in Marysville, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
State OKs Marysville plan with schools, jobs on chopping block

The revised plan would mean the loss of dozens of jobs and two schools — still to be identified — in a school district staring down a budget crunch.

The Trestle’s junction with I-5 is under evaluation (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Here’s your chance to give feedback on the US 2 trestle and its future

Often feel overwhelmed, vulnerable and on shaky ground? So is the trestle. A new $17 million study seeks solutions for the route east of Everett.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.