Tortilla West, Chow owner accused of embezzling more than $1 million from A.W. Shucks

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NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A Norfolk restaurateur is being sued by his business partners for $1 million after he allegedly embezzled from their company to finance two other restaurants he owned. 

Michael Davis discovered that his business partner, Johnathan Boggs, was allegedly embezzling from their company NVNG, Inc. in May 2018 after he discovered statements from a secret TowneBank account taken out in the company’s name, according to a lawsuit filed in Norfolk Circuit Court.

Davis and Boggs are majority shareholders of NVNG, Inc., and operate their restaurant A.W. Shucks under the company. They have a third business partner, Thomas Pittman, who owns 8 percent of the company.

Boggs controlled the company’s finances from 2013 until 2018. During that time he allegedly transferred more than $654,000 into accounts he controlled — hundreds of thousands of which was allegedly used for payroll and operational costs at two restaurants he owns outside of NVNG, Inc.: Tortilla West and Chow Norfolk, court documents state.

Those restaurants will close on Jan. 19, according to Facebook posts published on Wednesday. 10 On Your Side reached out to Boggs to question him about the allegations and the closing of Tortilla West and Chow Norfolk, but he did not respond to a request for comment.

Boggs is also accused of using a company debit card for personal expenses, like a $111 tab at the Green Onion, more than $1,100 in River Stone Chophouse products, and more than $1,500 in ATM withdrawls at hotels and casinos in Las Vegas, according to court documents.

The lawsuit alleges that Boggs also hasn’t filed taxes for the company since 2015, and that he took out nearly $500,000 in American Express loans in the company’s name.

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