Raleigh Businessman, Tax Protestor Pleads Guilty to Felony Tax Charges

Date:  March 26, 2007

RALEIGH – A Raleigh businessman pleaded guilty Monday in Wake County Superior Court to felony tax charges filed by the North Carolina Department of Revenue.

Russell E. Brummitt, Jr., 48, of 14205 Cross Creek Dr., Raleigh pleaded guilty on March 26, 2007 to two counts of income tax evasion.

Superior Court Judge Paul G. Gessner sentenced Brummitt to two consecutive six-month minimum, eight-month maximum prison terms. The sentences were suspended and Brummitt was placed on supervised probation for 36 months. He was also ordered to perform 100 hours of community service, pay a $1,000 criminal fine and timely file all taxes.

The state’s evidence showed that Brummitt was associated with “We the People” an organization that believes income tax is unlawfully imposed upon citizens of this country and is a violation of their constitutional rights. Brummitt did not file income tax returns after 2000 because he believed he did not have to comply with state tax laws. In 2002 Brummitt informed his accountant not to file extensions for him because he did not want his name to be in the Department’s database. In 2003 Brummitt, as owner of Ora Designers/Fine Jewelers, transferred the assets of his company to a trust in an attempt to conduct business without reporting the income for tax purposes. Beginning in 2005, he received $10,000 a month from the business and did not pay taxes on the income. As a result of the investigation by the Department of Revenue, Brummitt filed all delinquent income tax returns. He paid $41,333 during his court appearance.

The charges against Brummitt resulted from an investigation by the Department’s Raleigh Field Examinations Office and a special agent with the Department’s Criminal Investigations Division.

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