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Wesley Snipes tells Larry King why he shouldn't go to prison

Wesley Snipes Due to report to prison Thursday for failure to file tax returns, actor Wesley Snipes pulled out the big guns Tuesday night: He went on "Larry King Live."

"I want us to try the case in the court, and not in the media," his attorney Daniel R. Meacham said on the show. Snipes' appeal of his three-year sentence was rejected in July, and his request for a retrial was rejected in November.

"It's been presented as though I'm worthy of this punishment," Snipes told King. "I've been a law-abiding citizen ever since I grew up in the Bronx, New York."

Sounding like another celeb who's had trouble coming to terms with a court's decision, Snipes said he believed he was "fully compliant" in paying what he owed -- reportedly about $17 million, though that number didn't come from him.  

"They claimed that there was a certain number that was owed and that number has been all over the place," Snipes said. "The press has escalated it and changed it a number of times. But we think we are fully compliant with what was owed. Not only did I pay but my position is that I always paid."

The "Blade" star was convicted in 2008 of failing to file tax returns in the years 1999, 2000 and 2001, when he earned $40 million. He was acquitted on federal felony tax fraud and conspiracy charges.

The other men tried with him are now doing time; the actor was sentenced to the maximum term allowed for his misdemeanors, with the dollar amount involved playing a role -- a fact the actor characterized as "rather unusual and rather bizarre."

As for his Thursday plans, Snipes said: "We still have prayers out there, Larry. We still believe in miracles. So don't send me up the river just yet."

Snipes' request to report to prison Jan. 6 instead of Thursday -- on the grounds that because he has kids, he shouldn't have to go to prison during the holidays and it would be too disruptive to leave them before the holidays -- was denied Monday.



Wesley Snipes' 3-year prison sentence for tax evasion is upheld

Wesley Snipes retrial rejected; 'the time has come' for prison, judge says

-- Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: Wesley Snipes at the Venice International Film Festival on Sept. 8, 2009. Credit: Filippo Monteforte / AFP / Getty Images




Comments () | Archives (16)

What a joke your Justice System is. EX NY YANKEE PLAYER gets NO PUNISHMENT for a DUI Murder he commited while Snipes goes to Jail. I guess being an EX WHITE NY Yankee Baseball Player allows you to get drunk, drive & kill a person while a BLACK ACTOR goes to Jail for not filing his Income Tax Return. Is your country that desperate for CASH????????????

Leave the man alone...I Love U Wesley (:

just another celeb thinking thier above the law. send him to jail and tell him to quit his crying. shame a liked alot of his movies.

The Demonic systems of this world, such as the Criminal Justice System is not blind it sees every thing it is doing and have done. Justice has nothing to do with what is fair but with every thing to do with what can be proven even if what is proven is false. In this country you are guilty until proven innocent that is why for the most part you are kept in jail. If you are lucky enough to have money then you have options however many things play into the deliberation process, even violations of the judges orders.

U have to stay on top of your business.. everybody knows
that Sam is going to get his one way or the other...
when ur not paying it,, u know your not, so stop acting
surprised when the piper shows up!

at first he said it was his advisors who were at fault...now he says he paid the taxes....pick a story wesley and stick to it...lol....you made more money than most of us could ever dream of...yet we pay our taxes even if it means not paying our rent...so stop crying and do the time...you knew what you were doing.

as for Sciampacone's comment about how race played a factor...well many "white" men have gone to prison for not paying taxes (remember a white christian named Rev. Baker)...so stop all the racist claims and look at the facts!!

What a waste of Tax Payers money. He paid the taxes, although late and I am sure the additional interest and penalties were extensive. Let him go! How much are we going to pay to keep him?

Sounds like he is guilty, no special treatment, sorry, you do the crime, you do the time. But it makes a person wonder when they put people like Martha Stewart, who cooks, and Wesley Snipes, who entertains in jail, when there are people that commit serious crimes against society, are given a slap on the wrist. Difficult to understand. ??

The Laws should be consist, what goes for one shall it goes for all. I don't think it a race card, but I do think it up to the person who is wearing the Black robe. Some judge on how they feel , as long it's within the law. And they can because there is so many amendments and loop holes in the Law. Judges feel this individual need to be may a sample of or they don't want it seem that the are showing Favorite, that really sways how they place a Sentence. Unfortunate Wesley, got the one that want to make him a sample and push the Envelope on how far he could go. and I agree... when it comes to your MONEY...you need to have meeting and see Paperwork.

just get in the cell already

oh my god!!!why are there so many haters and RACISTS out there? Wesley Snipes is definitely getting a raw deal,especially when you compare him to Martha Stewart and her 6 months.To me it's so obvious that the "establishment" wants to make sure that persons such as wesley are stripped of their power..ie the ability to make millions as one of the executive producers of one of the most financially successful trilogies EVER,not to mention his ability to help his fellow black brothers,which he had been diong up to his incarceration last Thursday.We love you,man,remember they did the same thing to Marcus Garvey and many lesser black heroes so take strength from that...Our thoughts and prayers are with you,man!!!

I as a member of a society that has a law that says you have to pay tax on income that you have earnt and you don't pay the tax then you should have to face the consequences wether black or white you cannot blame it on racial discrimination.To many Americans of african american background use the racsist card to defend the undefendable.It may not go down well with them but the truth is the truth.

The justice system is a joke. White girls (ie Lindsey) get busted with drugs over and over and get slaps on the wrist. Wesley was not right for not paying his taxes, but 2 years for it? Seriously?

i am ignorant of the details here, guilty or innocent is not my point , but, if he is guilty, why isn't rangel in prison also? all he ends up with , after wasting tons of our money and resources, while he postures like a peacock and insults our intelligence, is a censure. double standards. typical example of a corrupt politician, far more egregious than a corrupt movie star, and it has gone on and on for centuries. to me, so very obvious and heinous an oversight, purposeful. more posturing and charades by our legislators, pretending to police and care.


What about OJ? He killed a white woman, but the justice system worked for him!!!

Comparing drug charges to felony tax evasion is expected of racist blacks, if it is in your favor.

There are many articles where he (yes, Wesley Snipes, in his own words) explains why HE feels HE doesn't owe taxes, because HE thinks that income tax laws are somehow illegitimate. He dug his own pit on this one.

Anyone that makes insane amounts of money and doesn't think they owe the government deserves to be jailed, IMHO.

Let's clear the table on this - he violated the law, he pays the consequences.

NO BODY usually goes to jail on misdemeanors!


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