verdict - not guilty of tax fraud
The jury acquits actor Wesley
Snipes of tax fraud and conspiracy charges on Friday.
Actor Wesley Snipes was found not guilty of federal tax-fraud
and conspiracy charges by the jury on Friday, but was convicted
on three misdemeanor counts of failing to file a tax return.
Snipes, who was indicted on six counts of willful failure to
file a tax return in 2006, was acquitted on three of the
charges, but found guilty in the other three. He is now facing
up to three years in prison, after the initial 16 years. The two
co-defendants Douglas P. Rosile, a de-licensed accountant, and
Eddie Ray Kahn, a tax protest leader, were found guilty of tax
fraud and conspiracy.
Wesley Snipes became an IRS target for
not paying taxes from 1999-2004, after he used tax protest
arguments long rejected by courts, as well as using fake checks
to pay the U.S. Treasury. The actor claimed that IRS's own code
meant no citizen had to pay taxes on income earned in this
country, and the agency had no legal authority to collect wages
anyway, because it is not a proper government entity. He also
declared himself a nonresident alien, thus not a subject to U.S.
The Wesley Snipes tax fraud case became
so "interesting", that a few online odds makers posted betting
line on whether the actor will be convicted or not. A guilty
verdict was favorite with odds 1/10.