Wesley Snipes reported to jail Thursday (December 9) to begin a three-year sentence for failing to file his tax returns.
Snipes turned up at the Federal Correctional Institution McKean in Lewis Run, Pennsylvania, a little before his noon surrender deadline, according to The Associated Press. Snipes, who has starred in hit films such as the “Blade” trilogy, “White Men Can’t Jump” and “New Jack City,” will be known as inmate #43355-018 at the minimum-security facility, ABC News reports.
The actor was convicted in 2008 of three misdemeanor counts of willful failure to file income taxes and was handed down a yearlong sentence for each conviction, which Snipes will serve consecutively. The “Undisputed” star reportedly owed $2.7 million in taxes from 1999 to 2001.
Snipes has spent the past two years vigorously fighting to avoid jail time by appealing the ruling, including a last-ditch effort to get a new trial on Wednesday, arguing that the judge should have allowed lawyers for the defense to interview jurors about accusations of misconduct. However, a Florida judge threw out the motion Thursday.
In his final TV appearance before he began his prison sentence, Snipes admitted on CNN’s “Larry King Live” Tuesday night that he was apprehensive about heading to jail.
“I think any man would be nervous if his liberty is at stake,” he said. “I’m disappointed that the system seems not to be working for me in this situation.”
He also maintained that he has paid the government what he believed he owed and shifted some of the blame of the tax debacle to those who handled his financial affairs.
“This is another thing that has been misreported: It has been framed that I was a conspirator and that I was an architect in a scheme by an organization that has been characterized as tax protesters,” Snipes said. “The press hasn’t reported that I was a client of people who I trusted [who] had knowledge and expertise in the areas of tax law that would protect my interests.”