Thursday, April 24, 2008


I guess the 'good luck' message I wished for Wesley was in vain. According to the Associated Press, Snipes called on famous friends to vouch for him, highlighted his clean criminal record and even wrote the government $5 million in checks — all in an effort to convince a judge that his conviction on tax charges should cost him nothing more than home detention and some public service announcements. None of it worked. The "Blade" actor was ordered to do hard time. Snipes was sentenced to three years in prison Thursday for failing to file tax returns, the maximum penalty — and a victory for prosecutors who sought to make an example of the action star. Snipes' lawyers had spent much of the day in court offering dozens of letters from family members, friends — even fellow actors Woody Harrelson and Denzel Washington — attesting to his good character. His attorneys recommended he be given home detention and ordered to make public service announcements because his three convictions were all misdemeanors and the actor had no previous criminal record.

Snipes apologized while reading from a written statement for his "costly mistakes," but never mentioned the word taxes. "I am an idealistic, naive, passionate, truth-seeking, spiritually motivated artist, unschooled in the science of law and finance," Snipes said. He said his wealth and celebrity attracted "wolves and jackals like flies are attracted to meat." He called himself "well-intentioned, but miseducated." Snipes surprised the court before Hodges handed down the sentence by offering the government three checks totaling $5 million in unpaid taxes over several years, money the government first denied but then accepted. Prosecutors called it "grandstanding" to avoid jail time, and a mere down payment on the actor's still-undetermined multi-million dollar tax bill.


Co-defendants Douglas P. Rosile and Eddie Ray Kahn were convicted on both those counts. Kahn, who refused to defend himself in court, was sentenced to 10 years, while Rosile received 54 months. Both will serve three years of supervised release. Snipes will serve one year of supervised release. Snipes and Rosile remain free and will be notified when they are to surrender to authorities. Defense attorney Carmen Hernandez signaled in court that Snipes would pursue an appeal.

Wesley Snipes has enlisted a couple of his celebrity friends--Denzel Washington and Judge Joe Brown--in order to drum up support in hopes of getting a lighter sentence (if any at all...which I highly doubt due to the fact that Johnnie Cochran done gone on to glory) at his tax invasion sentencing which will be held today (Thursday, April 24). Thirty-one character references were submitted by Snipes' legal team, according to Ocala, Fla's Star-Banner newspaper. The letters are written to Senior U.S. District Judge William Terrell Hodges, who is scheduled to sentence Snipes today on three counts of willfully failing to file tax returns. Snipes faces up to three years in jail and possibly $5 million or more in fines. His legal team hopes letters from Washington, Brown, Woody Harrelson and others will encourage the judge to go easy. "Wesley is like a tree - a mighty oak," Washington wrote in his letter to the judge, adding he has known the actor for 20 years. "Many who know him have witnessed the fruit of his labors, have sat in his shade and even been protected by his presence. I am proud of him, proud to call him a fellow thespian and most importantly, proud to call him a friend."

Good luck, homey.


Related Posts with Thumbnails
Template Designed by Douglas Bowman - Updated to Beta by: Blogger Team
Modified for 3-Column Layout by Hoctro