Another ‘Sovereign Citizen’ Charged With Tax Evasion

And yet another person who thinks they’re a citizen of the “Kingdom of Heaven” has been indicted for income tax evasion. These idiots think that because they claim to be part of the kingdom of heaven, they are therefore not U.S. citizens and don’t have to pay taxes.

A Minnesota woman refused to pay income taxes for at least seven years by claiming she and her husband were not U.S. citizens but permanent residents of the “Kingdom of Heaven,” prosecutors said.

Tami M. May, of Anoka, was charged with obstruction of due administration of IRS laws and 15 counts of filing false tax returns…

Investigators said Tami May subsequently made numerous “obstructive and fraudulent filings with the IRS including filing frivolous ‘zero income tax returns.’ ”

She also cited their supposed citizenship of the “Kingdom of Heaven” in an attempt to claim hundreds of thousands of dollars in income tax refunds, authorities said.

Their claims match arguments cited by members of the Embassy of Heaven sovereign citizens group, which issues passports, driver’s licenses, and license plates by claiming to be a religious organization that cannot be regulated.

The group is led by Craig Douglas Fleshman, a former Oregon state computer systems analyst who goes by the name “Pastor Paul Revere,” and claims that its followers are not subject to government jurisdiction because their allegiance rests with Jesus Christ.

“They are subjects of Christ, not any worldly government,” explained Carl Watner in a 1994 post on the Voluntaryist website. “The church’s position is that you are the final authority on where you reside and where you put your allegiance. No state can decide this for you, unless you let them.”

Kent Hovind is at least loosely affiliated with this group through Glen Stoll, who is an attorney that works with these folks and worked with him as well. There’s some serious delusion going on here.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return!

    So they missed the “Render unto Caesar” line of their scared book then I presume?

  • countryboy

    Gee, they must have missed the “render unto ceasar” thing in their bibles.

  • StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return!

    D’oh! “sacred book” = sacred book. Although some of the stuff in it is scary.

  • Mr Ed

    I know when foreign citizens are found to be here illegally we send them back to their country. Can we just return them to the Kingdom of Heaven?

  • smrnda

    On the idea that YOU decide where you reside or place your allegiance, I think kind of where you actually happen to be living and earning money (and using publicly funded services) takes precedence over whatever you happen to say; in fact, in most legal areas, what you elect to say is utterly meaningless, the facts determine things like residency and people are expected to lie at times to get out of following rules or paying money.

  • Sastra

    A Minnesota woman refused to pay income taxes for at least seven years by claiming she and her husband were not U.S. citizens but permanent residents of the “Kingdom of Heaven,” prosecutors said.

    Well, isn’t the solution to this one obvious? They say they reside in the “Kingdom of Heaven.” Fine. Let the State make real sure that’s exactly where they are.

    Death penalty offense.

  • D. C. Sessions

    So what they’re claiming is that they’re illegal aliens to boot — noncitizens of the USA who are here without visas.

    Fair enough. Time to deport them to their own country.

  • Kevin Kehres

    @7: A fair and equitable solution.

  • http://timgueguen.blogspot.com timgueguen

    I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a town called Kingdom of Heaven someplace in the US.

  • blf

    It says Ceasar, not a moolsin gay fascist n—r commie athiest elitist like Obama.

  • mikeyb

    Her biggest mistake is not being rich or a corporation. If you’re rich or a corporation there’s all kinds of legal ways of avoiding paying taxes. Take GE as one example of many, which in 2010 made 14B in profits and paid zilch, nada. It’s obscene but it is increasingly the norm. Must be nice.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/25/business/economy/25tax.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

  • raven

    They made a simple error in their nonreasoning.

    If they claim to reside in heaven, then they should actually be living in heaven.

    DailyBeast 2012:

    Since 2000, “lone-offender sovereign-citizen extremists have killed six law enforcement officers,” according to the FBI.

    They can be killers. Timothy McVeigh killed 168 during his Sovereign Citizen days.

    Sheriff’s deputies raided the church’s 34-acre property in Stayton, Ore., in 1997, for nonpayment of taxes, and took all of his land.

    The Embassy of Heaven itself is now owned by the federal government!!! Craig Fleshman’s property in the Willamette Valley was seized by the IRS for nonpayment of taxes.

  • Chiroptera

    That’s odd. I’m pretty sure that if I, a US citizen, find myself in the Kingdom of Heaven, I’d have to pay their taxes.

  • http://denkeensechtna.blogspot.com Deen

    “They are subjects of Christ, not any worldly government,” explained Carl Watner in a 1994 post on the Voluntaryist website.

    Then they should stop using the US government’s worldly contributions, like roads, power grid, clean water, police, fire department, etc etc etc.

  • blf

    If they claim to reside in heaven, then they should actually be living in heaven.

    Except that USAlienstani taxes a citizen on herhis worldwide income regardless of place of residence. It means that essentially every USAlienstanian has to file a federal tax return every year regardless of where they live or how long they have been living there. And, theoretically, as long as the place the expatriate is living in has a suitable “tax treaty” with USAlienstani, there is “no” double-taxation: Simplifying, the part of one’s income taxed by the foreign location is not taxed again by the USAlienstanis.

    It’s a weird system which is mostly unique to USAlienstani. Much of the rest of the world operates broadly along the pax-taxes-where-you-live lines.

  • caseloweraz

    A Minnesota woman refused to pay income taxes for at least seven years by claiming she and her husband were not U.S. citizens but permanent residents of the “Kingdom of Heaven,” prosecutors said.

    I wonder if the prosecutors advised them of the one guaranteed way to achieve that status. These other 39 citizens found the gate. Just sayin’

  • eric

    The church’s position is that you are the final authority on where you reside and where you put your allegiance. No state can decide this for you, unless you let them.”

    Sure, if you want to emigrate, you can. But if you don’t want to emigrate, you’re paying taxes.

  • http://www.ranum.com Marcus Ranum

    Sovereign Citizen

    Isn’t that an oxymoron?

  • dingojack

    Surely as a foreign national resident in the US, I’d still have to pay US taxes. They can claim to come from anywhere they like — but if they live in the US….

    Dingo

  • kevskos

    I thought timgueguen at #9 might be right but alas no, there does not appear to be a town in the US called Kingdom of Heaven. Lots of churches with that in their name though.

  • http://polrant@blogspot.com democommie

    “It says Ceasar, not a moolsin gay fascist n—r commie athiest elitist like Obama.”

    Ed may cover this in a later post, but I can’t WAIT!

    Last night at the White House Press Corps Dinner, Mr. Obamandingo made a funny (Well, I laughed MY ass off!).

    He said that the GOP was giving so much more shit to Boehner lately than he’s been getting from them that Orange IS the new Black.

  • Pierce R. Butler

    Does the US even have diplomatic recognition of the Kingdom of Heaven?

    Does either state maintain an embassy in the other’s capital?

    How about postal or telecomm links? (Does the NSA monitor the Kingdom’s King’s email?)

    Has the KoH acknowledged Ms May’s citizenship or sent a consul to visit her?

    Can she show a KoH passport and a visa allowing her into the US? Or is she, by her own admission, an illegal immigrant and (possibly) a fraudulent voter?

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    There are only two things certain in life; death and living in the Kingdom of Heaven so you don’t have to pay taxes.

  • pixiedust

    Anoka, MN has a population of about 17,500. And yet I have a general sense that its residents get into the news on a regular basis and not in a good way. I’d have to do some googling but I seem to remember Anoka being the dateline for quite a few stories over the years. One may have been a high-school-student-take-guns-to-school story.

    Is there something weird about that place?

  • bushrat

    Kingdom of Heaven…decent movie, but I wouldn’t want to live there.

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  • http://polrant@blogspot.com democommie

    “Is there something weird about that place?”

    Shortage of lutefisk, perhaps. Or, maybe it’s because they’re home of the Halloween Parade (per Wiki).

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=827538816 nickcan

    This might be a dumb question, but can we simply start treating them like non-US citizens? They appear to be in this country illegally without a visa of any kind. Can’t we simply deport them? If they complain, have their embassy work something out.