Lauryn Hill gets 3 months for failing to pay taxes: Read her reason why

Dec 8, 2004
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NEWARK, N.J. (AP) -- Grammy-winning singer Lauryn Hill stood in federal court Monday and compared her experience in the music business to the slavery her ancestors endured before a judge sentenced her to three months in prison for failing to pay about $1 million in taxes over the past decade.

"I am a child of former slaves who had a system imposed on them," Hill said before U.S. Magistrate Madeline Cox Arleo. "I had an economic system imposed on me."

Hill, who started singing with the Fugees as a teenager in the 1990s before releasing her multiplatinum 1998 album "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill," pleaded guilty last year to failing to pay taxes on more than $1.8 million earned from 2005 to 2007. Monday's sentencing also took into account unpaid state and federal taxes in 2008 and 2009 that brought the total earnings to about $2.3 million.

Despite having paid more than $900,000 in the past several days, Hill still owes interest and penalties, the U.S. attorney's office said.

In a forceful but controlled statement to the judge punctuated by occasional raps with her first on the podium, Hill described how she failed to pay taxes during a period when she'd dropped out of the music business to protect herself and her children, who now number six.

She said the treatment she received while she was in the entertainment business led to her decision to leave it.

"There were veiled threats, there was blacklisting," she said, without giving specifics. "I was told, 'That's how it goes, it comes with the territory.' I came to be perceived as a cash cow and not a person. When people capitalize on a persona, they forget there is a person in there."

In addition to serving three months in prison, Hill must pay a $60,000 fine. After she is released from prison, she will be under parole supervision for a year, the first three months of which will be spent under home confinement.

The 37-year-old South Orange resident had faced a maximum sentence of one year each on three counts of failing to file taxes. Her attorney had sought probation, arguing that Hill's charitable works, her family circumstances and the fact she paid back the taxes she owed should merit consideration.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Sandra Moser acknowledged Hill's creative talent and work on behalf of impoverished children but called Hill's explanation for her actions "a parade of excuses centering around her feeling put upon" that don't exempt her from her responsibilities.

"She wasn't interested in all those years in paying what she owed," Moser told the judge.

At the time of her arrest last year, Hill wrote a criticism rejecting pop culture's "climate of hostility, false entitlement, manipulation, racial prejudice, sexism and ageism."

"Over-commercialization and its resulting restrictions and limitations can be very damaging and distorting to the inherent nature of the individual," Hill wrote. "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! I also embraced my right to resist a system intentionally opposing my right to whole and integral survival."

Hill is to report to prison by July 8. It's not clear where she'll serve her sentence. She didn't comment after the sentencing.

She said in a recent post online that she has signed a recording contract with Sony.

"She is looking forward to putting her case behind her and getting back to her music and creating again," attorney Nathan Hochman said.
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FYI the houses on her street are like 800k to 1 mill...
 

BIV

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Oh, go fuck yourself.
 
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"I am a child of former slaves who had a system imposed on them," Hill said before U.S. Magistrate Madeline Cox Arleo. "I had an economic system imposed on me."
Lauryn Hill was born in South Orange, New Jersey of African descent, the second of two children born to high school English teacher Valerie Hill and computer programmer Mal Hill.
Slaves? Really? I know teachers like to say they're underpaid but that's more than stretching the definition of slavery unless her parents were about 130 years old when she was born.
 

Mags

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I bet her box staaaaaaaaanks.
 

Creasy Bear

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"I had an economic system imposed on me."
Yeah... it's called "civilization". There are plenty of places in Africa you can go if you want to get away from it.
 
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Neckbeard

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She's from a married, intact upper-middle class home of a school teacher and a computer program
and made millions of dollars off a record and she had AN ECONOMIC SYSTEM IMPOSED UPON HER?!
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn had an economic system imposed upon him. She's an upper class capitalist multimillionaire.

Nigs gonna nog.
 

fletcher

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If I had a dollar for every cunting cunt from South Orange/Maplewood who cry poverty because they live next to Newark and Irvington Id be a rich man. Usually its entitled white kids who think they are hoodrats living in mansions and not spoiled black folk.
 

Pigdango

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Glad to hear Ms. Hill was a Patrice O'Neal fan

 

Creasy Bear

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She doesn't think she should have to pay taxes because the music industry is a racist, exploitative, misogynistic business... and she can't wait to get back to it to make more money...

"She is looking forward to putting her case behind her and getting back to her music and creating again," attorney Nathan Hochman said.
 

Mags

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If I had a dollar for every cunting cunt from South Orange/Maplewood who cry poverty because they live next to Newark and Irvington Id be a rich man. Usually its entitled white kids who think they are hoodrats living in mansions and not spoiled black folk.
Lol. New Jersey problems ;)
 

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statement to the judge punctuated by occasional raps with her first on the podium

She rapped to the judge in her statement? That's weird, but she is a rapper. I've heard stranger shit. But with her first what? Wait, what? Oh, she banged her FIST on the podium while she read her statement.

FUCKING PROOFREAD YOUR SHIT, AP!!!
 

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I was gonna say that where she lives, the houses are huge and worth a fortune. She hated whitey since she joined the Fugees. Love how she says she was a slave under the music industry....but just signed with Sony Music.
 
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It's funny that she thinks she's a victim over our tax system considering that she was quite happy when Obama was re-elected and his campaign focused so hard on raising taxes. I guess she's just like the bulk of his supporters--raise someone else's taxes but leave mine alone (especially if I'm not paying any).
 
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statement to the judge punctuated by occasional raps with her first on the podium

She rapped to the judge in her statement? That's weird, but she is a rapper. I've heard stranger shit. But with her first what? Wait, what? Oh, she banged her FIST on the podium while she read her statement.

FUCKING PROOFREAD YOUR SHIT, AP!!!
She rapped in her statement to the judge? I dont' think a person can get more delusional than that. Her whole "I'm a victim" act is ridiculous coming from someone with that much money. She's also pulling the "I'm a victim" crap with the release of her new song. The evil record company is forcing her to release it now because she signed a contract stating that she would do exactly that! How dare they hold her to a legal obligation she willingly signed. Those bastards!
 

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She rapped in her statement to the judge? I dont' think a person can get more delusional than that. Her whole "I'm a victim" act is ridiculous coming from someone with that much money. She's also pulling the "I'm a victim" crap with the release of her new song. The evil record company is forcing her to release it now because she signed a contract stating that she would do exactly that! How dare they hold her to a legal obligation she willingly signed. Those bastards!
re read the article and take your time.
 
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re read the article and take your time.
My comment about her being forced to release her single was based on a statement on her website, not the article in the original post. I probably should've mentioned that.

Here is a link to a piece that I was ‘required’ to release immediately, by virtue of the impending legal deadline. I love being able to reach people directly, but in an ideal scenario, I would not have to rush the release of new music… but the message is still there. In light of Wednesday’s tragic loss (of former label mate Chris Kelly), I am even more pressed to YELL this to a multitude that may not understand the cost of allowing today’s unhealthy paradigms to remain unchecked!
- MLH
http://www.lauryn-hill.com/
 

Hudson

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My comment about her being forced to release her single was based on a statement on her website, not the article in the original post. I probably should've mentioned that.


http://www.lauryn-hill.com/
That isn't what I wanted you to re read and take your time, you dunderhead! She hit the podium with her hand, she didn't vocally rap.
 

whiskeyguy

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That isn't what I wanted you to re read and take your time, you dunderhead! She hit the podium with her hand, she didn't vocally rap.
Wait, she was rapping in court? That's fucking weird.