The Georgia Department of Revenue initiated the raids, which reportedly has to do with an investigation around her son Shanga Hankerson, who runs the operation. During the raids, customers were told to leave and employees were ordered out of the premises as the agents took files and computers as well as the contents of safes. Hankerson is allegedly being investigated for $1 million in missing revenue, but authorities say Gladys is completely in the clear.
“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. We’ve had over two dozen payment plans with him and he’s defaulted on every single one.”
A Gladys Knight spokesperson set the record straight about her involvement: “Gladys Knight lent her name to her son’s restaurants in the Atlanta area, similar to a celebrity endorsement,” the statement reads. “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.”