Uncle Sam does not play when it comes to his money!
The judge in Lauryn Hill’s tax evasion case gave ol’ girl a break yesterday in court, but only after giving her the scolding of her life over skipping out on paying restitution for the $1.8 million that she owed in taxes. Last summer, Lauryn wrote an open letter to the public explaining why she ignored her tax bill from 2005 to 2007, and in June 2012 she was arrested, released, and has only paid $50,000 toward the $554,000 ordered by the court. Last week, she also revealed that she had missed payments because she had withdrawn from society due to manipulation and “very real threats” to her family.
During her court appearance yesterday, she pleaded guilty to the tax evasion charge but revealed that she was waiting to get a $650,000 loan to pay everything off after recently signing a million dollar contract with Sony. Unfortunately, U.S. Magistrate Judge Madeline Cox Arleo wasn’t trying to hear that. She postponed sentencing until May 6 and said Lauryn shouldn’t be waiting on some deal to pay her debt because it’s not like she’s broke.
“This is not someone who stands before the court penniless. This is a criminal matter. Actions speak louder than words, and there has been no effort here to pay these taxes.”
Lauryn has until May 3 to get it together and then on May 6 she faces sentencing based on whether or not she’s paid the remainder of the half-million dollar restitution. Meanwhile, there is a debate over the full amount she owed in the first place. Her attorney Nathan Hochman says that it’s under $1 million, which means Lauryn’s facing 24-30 months behind bars, and the prosecutor saying it’s just a little bit over $1 million, which means she’s looking at 30 to 36 months in jail. However, Hochman is sure she can pay it back in time with no problem, and hopes to get her a probationary sentence which will keep the mother of six out of jail.
The good news here is that Lauryn will more than likely get this tax paid off and avoid the slammer. The even better news is that she’s signed a deal which could mean some new music soon.