Lauryn Hill Addresses Tax Evasion Charges

Ms. Hill explains why she refused to pay Uncle Sam.

Posted: 06/11/2012 05:07 PM EDT
Lauryn Hill

Following the revelation in the media that she failed to file tax returns from 2005 to 2007, Lauryn Hill published a long missive to her Tumblr over the weekend in which she both admits to and attempts to justify her actions.

In the 1,272 word essay, Hill defends not paying taxes during those years as a tactic necessary to "resist a system intentionally opposing my right to whole and integral survival."

"I’ve seen people promote addiction, use sabotage, blacklisting, media bullying and any other coercion technique they could, to prevent artists from knowing their true value, or exercising their full power," she says.

"I kept my life relatively simple, even after huge successes, but it became increasingly obvious that certain indulgences and privileges were expected to come at the expense of my free soul, free mind, and therefore my health and integrity."

Responding to this "corrupt" system, the Grammy award-winning artist famously fled the music industry. It now appears that she attempted to duck Uncle Sam as well.

"I did not deliberately abandon my fans, nor did I deliberately abandon any responsibilities, but I did however put my safety, health and freedom and the freedom, safety and health of my family first over all other material concerns!" she wrote.

"When I was working consistently without being affected by the interferences mentioned above, I filed and paid my taxes. This only stopped when it was necessary to withdraw from society, in order to guarantee the safety and well-being of myself and my family."

Hill said she previously made her arguments to the IRS when questioned about the missing tax money. They were, however, less than sympathetic. The government is currently suing the enigmatic star for failure to pay taxes on income in excess of $1.6 million. She has been called to appear before a federal magistrate in New Jersey on June 29, and could face up to a year in prison in addition to hefty fines.


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