Lauryn Hill says she didn't pay taxes because she withdrew from society
Former Fugees singer Lauryn Hill has issued a statement explaining why she willfully failed to pay three years of income taxes with the IRS.
"For the past several years, I have remained what others would consider underground," Hill wrote in a 1,272 word statement on her official Tumblr account on June 8. "I did this in order to build a community of people, like-minded in their desire for freedom and the right to pursue their goals and lives without being manipulated and controlled by a media protected military industrial complex with a completely different agenda."
"Having put the lives and needs of other people before my own for multiple years, and having made hundreds of millions of dollars for certain institutions, under complex and sometimes severe circumstances, I began to require growth and more equitable treatment, but was met with resistance," Hill continued.
Hill rose to fame as a member of the Fugees. In 1998, she launched her solo career with "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill," which earned the singer five Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year and Best New Artist. Hill has avoided publicity since dropping out of public view in 2002, following the success of her first album.
"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," the singer added. To those supporters who were told that I abandoned them, that is untrue. I abandoned greed, corruption, and compromise, never you, and never the artistic gifts and abilities that sustained me."
According to legal documents obtained by OnTheRedCarpet.com, Hill was charged on June 7, 2012, of three counts of failing to file tax returns in 2005, 2006 and 2007. The singer is scheduled to appear in court on June 29, 2012.
The 37-year-old singer went on to write that she attempted to reason with the IRS, who did not find her lifestyle choices grounds to dismiss her taxes.
"I conveyed all of this when questioned as to why I did not file taxes during this time period," Hill explained. "Obviously, the danger I faced was not accepted as reasonable grounds for deferring my tax payments, as authorities, who despite being told all of this, still chose to pursue action against me, as opposed to finding an alternative solution."
The legal documents state that Hill owns and operates four corporations, in addition to her career as a performer - Creations Music, Inc., Boogie Tours, Inc., L.H. Productions 2001, Inc. and Studio 22, Inc.
Hill's primary income is from royalties from recordings and films. During the three years that she failed to file taxes, the singer earned over $1.6 million.
Each of the three counts with which Hill is charged carry a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a $100,000 fine.
Hill welcomed her sixth child in July 2011. The baby boy was the first to be born to hill after splitting from longtime partner Rohan Marley, a son of reggae legend Bob Marley.
Marley was reportedly married at the time they met in 1996. The couple have five children together, Zion David-Nesta Marley, 14, Selah Marley, 13, Joshua Marley, 10, John Marley, 9 and Sarah Marley, 4.