One bad apple

What do we make of the unfortunate case of Walter Anderson, the telecomm and space biz bigwig who plead guilty last week to two counts of federal tax evasion and one count of fraud and now holds the US national if not galactic record for personal income tax crime (at least among those who got caught) -- failing to report $365 million?

Well, now he has to pay it -- although his lawyers are still waiting for their fees -- and faces up to 10 years in prison. (He'll be sentenced in January.)

Walter, the big time space investor and enthusiast who we know from, among other things, ventures such as MirCorp, Rotary Rocket and Orbital Recovery should not reflect badly on space business entrepreneurs. Most space folks pay their taxes.

I don't have the indictment but here is the original
DOJ press release announcing the charges against Walter last year. (Feb. 28, 2005)

Here are reports on the case via
The Washington Post and Bloomberg.

By the way, if any big bucks tax scammers are looking forward to future space settlements as hot new tax havens or locations for shell companies, secret accounts, drop boxes and those sorts of clever things, as IRS Commissioner Mark W. Everson said, "This case sends a strong signal to anyone thinking about going offshore to avoid taxes. We have stepped up our efforts to pursue high-income tax cheating, whether it takes place in the United States or overseas."

Presumably, this policy will extend to space, too.

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Image credit: CNNMoney.com

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