- Days left
The Internal Revenue Service says that from 1999 to 2004, actor Wesley Snipes didn't file tax returns... and his income during that time was a whopping $37.9 million. What's more, he was told in 2002 that he was being criminally investigated, but he continued to not file.

How did this happen? Apart from possibly internalizing Leona Helmsley's sage advice ("Only the little people pay taxes"), Snipes hooked up with Eddie Ray Kahn, a known tax protester who had been banned from filing tax returns for others because of his shenanigans with a group called American Rights Litigators.

In addition to not filing tax returns, he also is accused of trying to get fraudulent refunds for over $11 million of taxes paid in 1996 and 1997. Snipes was warned on more than one occasion that he was in trouble for his tax-related activities, but it doesn't seem to have bothered him.


The trial begins today near Orlando, Florida, where prosecutors say Snipes lived when he committed his tax fraud. The government says that at the time the fraud was committed, Snipes signed deals for the movies "Blade II" and "Blade: Trinity," and each deal was worth more than $10 million.

Taxes on almost $38 million of unreported income? Huge. Interest and penalties? Huge as well. Possible imprisonment if criminally convicted? Priceless.

Tracy L. Coenen, CPA, MBA, CFE performs fraud examinations and financial investigations for her company Sequence Inc. Forensic Accounting, and is the author of Essentials of Corporate Fraud.

Increase your money and finance knowledge from home

Economics 101

Intro to economics. But fun.

View Course »

Intro to different retirement accounts

What does it mean to have a 401(k)? IRA?

View Course »

TurboTax Articles

Tax Tips for the Blind

Anyone whose field of vision falls at or below 20 degrees, who wears corrective glasses but whose vision is 20/200 or less in his best eye, or who has no eyesight at all, meets the legal definition of being blind and is eligible for certain tax deductions.

What is Form 4255: Recapture of Investment Credit?

When is a tax credit not a tax credit? When the IRS takes it back. If you're in the situation where you have to file IRS Form 4255, you might have to pay back a tax credit you've earned in prior years. This process, known as recapture, occurs if you claim a credit -- in this case, a credit for a specific type of business investment -- and then no longer qualify for that credit.

The Most Important Tax Forms for ALEs (Applicable Large Employers)

In 2015, some parts of the Affordable Care Act specifically apply to businesses, in particular, large employers. The Employer Shared Responsibility provisions affect companies with 50 or more full-time employees or an equivalent of part-time or seasonal workers. These companies are called Applicable Large Employers, or ALEs. 2015 is considered a transition year as everyone gets used to the new normal for workplace health plans.

Employer Sponsored Health Coverage Explained

The Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, is simpler than some people may give it credit for. The basic rule to remember is that everyone must carry Minimum Essential Coverage (MEC) or pay a penalty. Employers with 50 full-time employees or more are obligated to sponsor plans for their workers to help them meet this requirement.

How to Report RSUs or Stock Grants on Your Tax Return

Restricted stock units (RSUs) and stock grants are often used by companies to reward their employees with an investment in the company rather than with cash. As the name implies, RSUs have rules as to when they can be sold. Stock grants often carry restrictions as well. How your stock grant is delivered to you, and whether or not it is vested, are the key factors when determining tax treatment.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum