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Wesley Snipes Must Report to Prison on Tax Evasion Sentence

By Laura Strachan, Esq. on December 03, 2010 6:02 AM

Wesley Snipes is reporting to prison and it is not for a new movie role. The actor was ordered to voluntarily surrender to a medium security federal prison in Pennsylvania to begin his three year sentence on tax evasion.

The 48-year-old Snipes was convicted in 2008 of willful failure to file income tax returns. At his trial, the prosecution argued that the star had earned $38 million since 1999 but had failed to file tax returns or pay taxes during the decade.

Snipes was hoping to continue living life outside bars based on a pending appeal before the U.S. Supreme Court. Snipes has argued for a new trial based on the fact that many of the convicting jurors came into the case thinking he was guilty of the crimes. Snipes' other argument rests on the recent conviction of Kenneth Starr (no, not the one you are thinking of but the financial advisor to the stars) who recently revealed that he cheated many of his celebrity clients out of tens of millions of dollars, including Wesley Snipes.

"The defendant Snipes had a fair trial; he has had a full, fair, and thorough review of his conviction and sentence ... the time has come for the judgment to be enforced," The Associated Press quotes the appellate judge as writing.

The start of the prison sentence does not necessarily mean the end of the appeals road for Snipes, he'll simply have to find out in jail. The Wesley Snipes tax evasion sentence is a lesson in numbers -- no matter how much you owe, you have to pay and failure to do so is a criminal offense. Although the Marshal's order was classified as "voluntary." Sould Wesley Snipes fail to report to prison, the voluntary will become mandatory.

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