Providence: Red Bull failed to pay taxes on Mini Cooper

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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Attorneys representing the city of Providence have filed suit against Red Bull North America seeking more than $1,700 in unpaid taxes and penalty fees on a Mini Cooper owned by the energy drink company.

The suit, filed in Rhode Island Superior Court on Feb. 13, states that Red Bull failed to pay an $896 car tax bill that was due July 1, 2009. The company now faces $814 in penalties in addition to the tax bill.

A spokesperson for Red Bull did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday.

Victor Morente, a spokesperson for Mayor Jorge Elorza confirmed the vehicle in question is a 2006 Mini Cooper, but he did not say whether it is the promotional Red Bull car that has a large can with the energy drink’s logo attached to its rear window.

City tax records show Red Bull owns two vehicles registered in Providence.

Providence collects approximately $30 million a year in motor vehicle excise taxes, according to city records. The city charges $60 per $1,000 of assessed value, with a $2,000 exemption.

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Dan McGowan ( dmcgowan@wpri.com ) covers politics, education and the city of Providence for WPRI.com. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter: @danmcgowan