DMX Sentenced to 1 Year in Prison for Tax Evasion

Illustration for article titled DMX Sentenced to 1 Year in Prison for Tax Evasion
Photo: Tasos Katopodis (Getty Images for Live Nation)

DMX has been sentenced to a year in prison, despite his attorney’s best efforts to change the heart and mind of U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff by playing his client’s music—yes—in court. You read that correctly.


The plan was reported by the Associated Press on Monday, and The Root’s Michael Harriot subsequently explained why it’s ridiculous. Meanwhile, TMZ revealed on Wednesday that the song his attorney played was “Slippin’.” A good choice, but not good enough.

The rapper, born Earl Simmons, was charged with 14 counts of tax evasion in July 2017. He spent the night in jail, posted a $500,000 bond and was released, pleading not guilty to all charges. According to the New York Times, he faced up to 44 years in prison.

In November, DMX pleaded guilty before Rakoff in Manhattan federal court in New York City to one count of tax fraud, admitting to hiding millions of dollars in income from 2010 to 2016, as well as not paying a hefty $1.7 million tax liability (stemming from income he earned from 2002 to 2006).

“Today Simmons made a choice between right or wrong and did the right thing,” acting U.S. Attorney Joon H. Kim said at the time. “No matter who you are or whatever fame you may have achieved, the law applies equally to all, and no one is exempt from the shared obligation to pay our taxes.”

Sadly, this story took a turn in January, when DMX, after allegedly failing a drug test, which was part of the terms of his parole, went to prison. “I’m saddened and disappointed. We’ll have to deal with it accordingly,” his attorney told TMZ.


At this week’s sentencing, X “said he was too old to be doing the things he’s doing and admitted he hasn’t been thinking straight,” according to TMZ. A teachable moment. Everyone should pay their taxes.

Senior Writer, Jezebel


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