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The purpose of this website is to provide interested people with relevant and timely background information regarding the Wesley Snipes criminal trial taking place in January 2008 in Ocala, FL.

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Day 4: The prosecution witnesses continue

By JJ MacNab | January 22, 2008

Witness Crowley (Continued): The papers filed by Snipes over the years were fairly typical tax denier fare. Snipes tried to demand that certain forms, statements, and in one case, even a book, be added to his official IRS file. He tried to file a 42 page letter instead of a Form 1040, even though none of the typical information such as income or deductions was provided in the letter. Snipes also demanded that the IRS respond to his 42 page document within 30 days or they would default on his demands.

In his correspondence with the IRS, Snipes referred to himself repeatedly as “one” rather than “I.”

Witness Kenneth Starr: Mr. Starr owns Starr & Associates in New York and is no relation to the Ken Starr who investigated President Clinton in the Monica Lewinsky affair. Mr. Starr is an attorney with a master’s degree in taxation, and his firm offers business management, bookkeeping, and accounting services to celebrities and high net worth individuals. Snipes became his client in the early 1990s.

In 1999, tax planning and preparation for his client began to get a lot more difficult. Mr. Snipes had apparently purchased a “pure trust” and placed his substantial business assets in a Swiss account through this trust. When it came time in early 2000 to prepare the 1999 tax returns, Snipes refused to provide the required information and instead told his advisor about the 861 scheme. When Starr warned Snipes that following such advice would get him in trouble, Snipes told him, “You always think you’re right and you always know everything. You aren’t right about this.”

Mr. Starr terminated his professional relationship with Mr. Snipes in mid 2000 and warned him in a 90 minute phone call that he was making a serious mistake and to obtain a professional opinion.

On cross examination, defense attorney Barnes attempted to claim that Snipes had lost money in 1998 as a result of Starr’s mismanagement. Starr said that all of the investments he recommended and managed had made money but that Snipes had spent a considerable sum that year filming documentaries. Barnes accused Starr of taking out a loan without Snipes knowledge, but Starr said that Snipes had taken out the loan and even signed several renewal notes. Snipes had even complained to the New York District Attorney’s office about Starr, and the DA had not taken any action against Starr. Barnes asked whether Starr had gotten Snipes involved in the doomed Planet Hollywood investment, but Starr said that Snipes’ friend Robert Earl had convinced Snipes to invest.

Witness Ronald Starr: Ronald is Kenneth Starr’s son, and has a law degree as well. Ronald confirmed that the problems started in 1999 and continued until Starr & Associates terminated the Snipes account in mid 2000. In March 2000, Ronald and Starr & Associates accountant Michael Canter called Eddie Ray Kahn and were told that “The Internal Revenue Code isn’t law, and that Section 861 defines which income is taxable.”

Witness Michael Canter: Mr. Canter is a CPA employed by Starr & Associates for the past 15 years. His statements confirmed the stories already told by Kenneth and Ronald Starr.

Interesting bits:

Topics: Snipes | 1 Comment »

One Response to “Day 4: The prosecution witnesses continue”

  1. Allen Taylor Says:
    January 22nd, 2008 at 8:34 am

    I found your site on technorati and read a few of your other posts. Keep up the good work. I just added your RSS feed to my Google News Reader. Looking forward to reading more from you.

    Allen Taylor