Hip hop artist Joseph Cartagena aka Fat Joe was sentenced on Monday to four months in federal prison and was fined $15,000 for failure to file tax returns on more than $3.3 million of income.
The 42-year-old rapper faced the possibility of up to two years in prison after pleading guilty in December on two counts of failing to file with the Internal Revenue Service.
US Magistrate Judge Cathy Waldor gave the Bronx-born rapper credit for paying $718,000 back in taxes prior to his sentencing and for his charitable work.
The court received more than 60 letters on his behalf, including one from Bronx Borough president Ruben Diaz, who cited Cartagena’s efforts to donate computers to local schools.
Cartagena apologised to his family and friends, saying he let them down. He said his six-year-old daughter was being taunted in school by classmates who said her father was going to jail.
“There was a lot going on in the years that I didn’t file my taxes, but it was my responsibility,” he said. His hits include the 2004 song Lean Back.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 26th, 2013.
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