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Wesley Snipes verdict - not guilty of tax fraud

The jury acquits actor Wesley Snipes of tax fraud and conspiracy charges on Friday.

Wesley Snipes verdict - not guilty of tax fraud 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. tax laws.

 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.

 Published on 02/01/2008

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