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FUTUREMAN GETS HIS FUTURE BACK

August 16, 2005

Flecktones fans, rejoice!

Roy Wooten (aka Futureman), percussionist for the Flecktones, will not have to serve prison time after pleading guilty to tax evasion. He was sentenced to two years probation on August 8 by a federal judge in Nashville.

This appears to be a light sentence. The sentence comes out of a plea agreement with prosecutors in which 3 charges were dismissed. Mr. Wooten will also have to pay about $131,000 in back taxes. The maximum sentence for one count of tax evasion is five years in jail, and the "guideline range" for prison for the amount involved is 8-14 months, according to the plea agreement.

Mr. Wooten apparently got into tax trouble by believing "Tax Honesty" arguments that the tax law is invalid for various reasons. From the light sentence, it would appear the government agreed that Mr. Wooten was was more naive than cunning when he failed to pay his taxes. It's good that they can distinguish between Futureman and tax protest promoters.

UPDATE In case you were wondering, he can travel with the band. From the sentencing document linked below:

The Defendant is permitted to work by performing music without geographic limitation. Provided, however, Defendant shall advise the Probation Office in advance of any travel outside the United States and shall provide an itinerary for such work related travel. This Special Condition supersedes the Standard Conditions of Supervision.

UPDATE II: It looks like it was a light sentence. An ESPN sportscaster will serve 11 months in prison for evading $167,000 in taxes.

Documents (links fixed now):

Sentencing Document

Guilty plea

Prior Coverage:

FUTUREMAN PLEADS GUILTY TO TAX EVASION

TAKE A TAX PROTESTER POSITION ON YOUR RETURN: ARE YOU OUT OF YOUR MIND?

I would link to media coverage of the sentencing, but I haven't found any. I have a Google "news alert" to keep me posted on tax evasion cases - and one for Futureman specifically - and have come up empty.

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