Three Gladys Knight’s Chicken and Waffles locations in Atlanta are closed after a raid by the Georgia Department of Revenue. Knight’s son Shanga Hankerson was the target of the raid, reports Channel 2, and he’s accused of “stealing over $650,000 in both sales and withholding tax.”

Georgia Department of Revenue Special Investigations Chief Jeff Mitchell said the investigation surrounds Hankerson and not Knight.

Mitchell says neither Knight nor any other restaurant employees face criminal charges. But a warrant is charging Hangerson, the chain’s owner, with felonies, saying not all the money involved is in the warrants but.
“Shanga’s accused of stealing over 650,000 in both sales and withholding tax,” said Agent Josh Waites. “(With) penalties and interest, it’s up to over $1 million owed.”

The restaurants reportedly could reopen as early as Thursday, under state control. A statement from a spokesperson provided to 11 Alive indicated Knight is focusing on her family.

Gladys Knight lent her name to her son’s restaurants in the Atlanta area, similar to a celebrity endorsement. Ms. Knight was not involved in any way with the operation of the restaurants and she is sure that her son and his business partners will rectify the situation. As always, her main concern is for her family’s well-being and she is making sure the family has the guidance they need to assess the situation and move forward.

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