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“There is nothing more unequal, than the equal treatment of unequal people.”     Thomas Jefferson

July 21, 2007

Tax Protester Acquitted Of Tax Evasion

by Doug Mataconis

To be honest, I’ve never really thought much of most of the legal arguments put forward by the tax protest crowd. For the most part, such as in the case of those who try to argue that the 16th Amendment was never really ratified, they just sound nutty.

But, that may have to change, now that a Federal Court Jury in Louisiana has acquitted a tax protester:

A Shreveport attorney who has challenged the government for years on the legality of filing federal income taxes has been acquitted on charges he failed to file returns.

A federal jury unanimously found Tommy Cryer not guilty this week on two misdemeanor counts of failure to file.

And according to Cryer, the prosecution dismissed two felony charges of tax evasion prior to trial.

Attempts by The Times on Thursday to reach U.S. Attorney Donald Washington or Bill Flanagan, first assistant U.S. attorney, were not successful. Calls made to the two were not immediately returned.

“The court could not find a law that makes me liable or makes my revenues taxable,” Cryer said. “The Supreme Court has ruled that the government cannot impose an income tax on anything but the profits and gains. When you work for someone you give your service and labor in exchange for money, so everything you make is not profit or gain. You put something into it.”

And just how did he pull this off ?

Cryer created a trust listing himself as the trustee, and received payments of dividends, interest and stock income to that trust, according to the indictment. He also was accused of concealing his receipt of the sources of income from the IRS by failing to file a tax return on behalf of that trust.

“I determined that my personal earnings were not 100 percent profits, some were income,” Cryer said. “I refuse to file, I refuse to pay unless they can show me I have a lawful reason to pay.”

“What I earned was my own personal labor. I am giving something in exchange. I’m giving my property and I don’t belong to anyone else.”

Cryer says he stopped filing returns more than 10 years ago after he investigated claims that income tax was a sham. He contends the law doesn’t actually tax personal earning.

Something tells me there’s more to this case than meets the eye and that the reasons for Cryer’s acquittal aren’t exactly what he would have us believe. Nonetheless, this is interesting.


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5 Comments

  1. http://groups.google.com/group/misc.taxes/msg/d67c00b7850df816?

    Here is a little more information. I would like to hear from the jury.

    Comment by Amy — July 21, 2007 @ 3:54 pm
  2. The 16th Amendment:

    “The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several states, and without regard to any census or enumeration.”

    Can anyone help me to understand how these guys think the 16th DOESN’T give the Congress power to tax money that one earns (called “income”). And if there isn’t a law to take earned income, then why is there a tax code with tax brackets that are based solely on earned income? Actually curious here because I can’t see how their arguments are remotely correct to begin with.

    Comment by Adam — July 21, 2007 @ 9:15 pm
  3. You have to look back at the constitution’s definition of “income”. It is defined as profits or gains. Since you are trading work for money, it is an even exchange. There is no profit or gain.

    Comment by mike — July 21, 2007 @ 10:44 pm
  4. Thanks for the explanation Mike. I’ll look into it. If this is truly the case, even conservatives aren’t willing to admit the constitutional fraud taking place even as they promote strict adherence to the originalist viewpoint.

    Comment by Adam — July 21, 2007 @ 11:57 pm
  5. Spot on, Mike. “Income” was defined by the courts as “profit” and not as the bater that takes place when you trade your labor for cash.

    Check out Russo’s “America” movie. Shocking interviews from former IRS agents now in the protest movement.

    Comment by david — July 25, 2007 @ 9:15 am

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