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Tony Sutton and Baja Sol owed over $250,000 in back taxes

Tony Sutton was apparently as bad with his own money as he was with the Minnesota Republican Party's, according to records obtained by City Pages.

Sutton "sold out" of Baja Sol, the Mexican restaurant chain he ran with his wife, Bridget Sutton, in February, and left the eateries thousands of dollars in debt to the Minnesota Department of Revenue. The state placed several liens against various Baja Sol companies last fall, including Sutton Enterprises, LLC, which owed $93,114 in unpaid taxes.

Sutton declined to discuss the lien, saying it was a settled matter, and adding: "I don't want to talk about it because it's my personal business and you're obviously on some kind of witch hunt."

Click on the image to see the tax liens for Baja Sol.
Click on the image to see the tax liens for Baja Sol.

Sutton also declined to discuss Baja Sol franchises that had liens taken out against them while he was still on the payroll.

Baja St. Louis Park, for instance, had a lien taken out against it on October 19, 2010, for $41,177 with the Secretary of State's office, and another October 21, 2010, for $41,147 with Dakota County. Those were not paid off until May 4, 2011, after Sutton left Baja Sol.

Baja Roseville had two liens taken out against it last winter: the first, on December 23, 2010, for $50,128, with Ramsey County, and the second, January 20, for $46,749 with the Secretary of State.

Those were paid off last April, after Sutton left the company.

The other Baja Sol enterprise to have liens taken against it was JC Food Systems, LLC. JC Food Systems had two liens taken against it on October 19, 2010, with Hennepin County and the Secretary of State's office, for $43,506 and $20,482 respectively. That was not paid off until last April.

Baja Sol attorney Jack Harper declined to discuss the liens.

The unpaid tax liens weren't the only debts accumulated by Baja Sol with Sutton at the helm: Baja Sol and Tony Sutton are being sued by the landlord of the Inver Grove Heights Baja Sol for unpaid rent.

Sutton recently resigned his position as chairman of the Republican Party, leaving the GOP with nearly half a million dollars of debt.

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