October 18, 2006

Yet Another Reason Not to Mess with the Federal Government

UNFORTUNATELY, Wesley Snipes is learning the hard way that one messes with the U.S. Government at one's peril. Recently, federal prosecutors charged the veteran actor with not filing his taxes for several years, as well as charging he took part in an, um, interesting tax avoidance scheme.

According to the Government's allegations, Mr Snipes disregarded his long-time tax counsel and instead relied on advice from tax-scheme promoters, who claimed that under U.S. tax law, Mr Snipes owed no taxes on his domestic income.

Oops.

Regardless of how the criminal case turns out, though, it's fair to say that reliance may have been Mr Snipes' worst decision since agreeing to star in "Boiling Point," a wretched 1993 detective movie that -- some thirteen years later -- I'm still angry about seeing.

Christ, everyone with whom I went to see "Boiling Point" was angry at the end of it. I mean, it was so bad that I half wished I had gone to class that afternoon, even though by that time in life I was approaching high school with a combination of nausea and ennui.

Anyway, the indictment -- which appears on The Smoking Gun's Web site -- is rather interesting to read. I must say that, given the allegations, I was surprised at how long it took for the Government to bring the action. Based on the Government's recounting of events in the document, it certainly seems like they gave Mr Snipes every possible opportunity to accede to the Government's demands, and it would appear they finally ran out of patience with his alleged refusal to follow the nation's tax laws.

As for Mr Snipes, his side of the story isn't known yet. That's because he is nowhere to be found, and a warrant has been issued for his arrest. But for now, let's consider that an in absentia plea of not guilty.

Posted by Benjamin Kepple at October 18, 2006 08:50 PM | TrackBack
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