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Actor Wesley Snipes faces up to three-year prison term

19 July 10 13:26
Wesley Snipes

Wesley Snipes is facing three years in prison after losing an appeal against his conviction for tax offences.

Lawyers for the actor, whose films include the Blade trilogy, had argued the sentence was "unreasonable".

But the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta found that a three-year term in federal prison was appropriate.

In February 2008, Snipes was found guilty of deliberately failing to file tax returns for 1999, 2000 and 2001.

He earned more than $37m (£24m) in gross income between 1999 and 2004 but did not file individual federal income tax returns for any of those years, according to official court papers.

The actor, 47, was cleared of more serious fraud and conspiracy charges.

On bail

Snipes, 47, was sentenced in April 2008 and launched an appeal the following month.

He has been on bail ever since.

Snipes' lawyers had also argued that their client should have been granted a hearing to decide whether his trial should have been held in New York instead of Florida, but this was also dismissed.

In 2007, his lawyers had challenged the venue, alleging that the government had chosen Ocala County, Florida, for trial for racially discriminatory reasons.

The star's lawyer was not immediately available for comment following Friday's ruling. It is not yet known when his sentence will begin.

Snipes' other films include White Men Can't Jump, Passenger 57, Demolition Man and One Night Stand.

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