Top 10 Most Notorious Tax Fraud Cases in History

There are only two things certain in life – death, and taxes. You can’t cheat the first, so some attempt to trick the latter.

Some do it in such a notorious way that what they did stays forever recorded in the annals of history. With that in mind, here is our take on ten such tax fraud cases.

1.    The Biggest Tax Evasion Case

Walter Anderson is known to many as the guy who wanted to turn the Russian Mir Space Station into a tourist destination, but he was also the central part of the most massive case of personal tax evasion in the history of the US. He was charged for hiding a staggering $365 million worth of income.

2.    Rapping and Cheating

Dwayne Carter Jr. or more commonly known as Lil Wayne; the IRS charged him with owing $12 million in back taxes. It appears that he still hasn’t paid most of that.

3.    Al Capone’s Empire

We all know Al Capone, the notorious gangster from the Prohibition Era. However, not many know that he was finally caught in the end, due to tax fraud. He didn’t want to pay taxes on his unlawful activities (yes, those were taxed in that era!) and managed to get away with it for a time but finally charged with a prison term of 11 years.

4.    “We Don’t Pay Taxes. Only the Little People Pay Taxes”

Leona Helmsley uttered the line at her sensational trial in 1989. She was charged with tax evasion but only served 21 months in prison. She also left her fortunes to her dog and was known by many as the Queen of Mean.

5.    Nixon’s Vice President

Spiro T. Agnew was the 39th Vice President of the United States who resigned the post after being charged with several illegal practices, including tax fraud.

6.    The New York Mets Player

Darryl Strawberry – sentenced for only a single count of tax evasion in 1995, but later admitted that he owed the government much more as he didn’t report more than $350,000 in income.

7.    Cage Gets Caged

Many celebrities try to commit tax fraud, but Nicolas Cage always tops such lists, for the amount he owed ($13 million) and especially for the way he got to owe such ridiculously massive amounts. He blamed it all on his financial manager, yet he was spending money on insanely unnecessary and expensive things like a private island and an albino king cobra.

8.    Not a Murderer Never Paid Taxes

We all know O. J. Simpson and his controversial murder case. However, the famous football player also committed tax fraud, and he owed around $1.4 million to the IRS.

9.    The Survivor Couldn’t Survive Taxes

Richard Hatch was the first winner of the show Survivor which brought him instant fame. However, he received infamy as well for failing to pay taxes and ended up serving 51 months in prison.

10.   The IRS Tapes: Who’ll Buy My Memories

Willie Nelson, the renowned composer of country music, got his assets seized by the IRS when they decided he owed them $16.7 million. The charge got reduced to $6 million, and he eventually made the album – The IRS Tapes: Who’ll Buy My Memories – and the profits of the record went to IRS.

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