Grammy winning singer Lauryn Hill is facing federal charges and jail time because she failed to file and pay her taxes between 2005 – 2007. The US internal revenue services have claimed that Hill owes the government more than $1.8 million (£1.17m). She will now have to appear in court in Newark, New Jersey to face charges on 3 counts of tax evasion. If found guilty she could face a maximum penality of 3 years in jail and up to $300,000 in fines.
In light of these charges and surrounding media attention, Hill has issued a long, very personal and very open statement addressing in much detail the reasons behind her missed tax payments. In it she explains:
“For the past several years, I have remained what others would consider underground. 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”.
“…I kept my life relatively simple, even after huge successes, but it became increasingly obvious that certain indulgences and privileges were expected to come at the expense of my free soul, free mind, and therefore my health and integrity. So I left a more mainstream and public life, in order to wean both myself, and my family, away from a lifestyle that required distortion and compromise as a means for maintaining it. During this critical healing time, there were very few people accessible to me who had not already been seduced or affected by this machine, and therefore who could be trusted to not try and influence or coerce me back into a dynamic of compromise”.
Hill goes on to address needing to protect her family from “hostility, false entitlement, manipulation, racial prejudice, sexism and ageism that [she] was surrounded by” and how/why this lead to her facing these charges.
Read the full statement after the jump.