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Man claiming to be sovereign citizen, exempt from taxes sentenced

Published On: Feb 13 2014 09:46:04 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. -

A man claiming to be a “sovereign citizen” was sentenced Thursday for filing false tax refunds claiming he was exempt from taxes, according to a state Department of Justice release.

John Glavin, 44, of New Lisbon, was sentenced to three years in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release for filing a false refund claim with the Internal Revenue Service, according to the release. False claims filed by Glavin totaled $956,662.

Glavin was indicted on April 24, 2013, for making a false claim for refund against the United States by submitting a false 2005 income tax return to the IRS claiming a tax refund of $255,958, official said. The tax return had nine fake forms, which falsely reported that Glavin had received $425,321 in income and had taxes withheld from that income.

Glavin was indicted on a second charge of making a false claim by submitting a false 2008 tax income return to the IRS claiming a tax refund of $700,704, according to the release. The form had 12 fake forms, which falsely reported that Glavin had received $1,076,202 in income and had taxes withheld from that.

According to the release, during the IRS criminal investigation Glavin filed multiple lawsuits in federal court to stop the enforcement of subpoenas for records, arguing that “sovereign citizens” are not citizens of the United States and the tax Form 1040 is not legitimate.

The judge noted Glavin’s arguments have been discredited.

Glavin also sent documents to IRS employees with information about sovereign citizens’ beliefs, stating that Glavin was exempt from taxes, according to the release. While on pretrial supervision, Glavin also mailed sovereign citizen documents to government officials in connection with a civil foreclosure action on Glavin’s home. All of these documents included fake promissory notes claiming to be used in paying off his debts.

The judge also noted that Glavin claimed to be the governor of the Wisconsin Republic Free State, officials said. While active in the Sovereign Citizens for Liberty movement, Glavin told a police officer during a 2011 traffic stop that he was an American national and not subject to police jurisdiction.

Glavin’s request for probation and home detention was denied, according to the release.

The judge noted in court that Glavin’s conduct before and during the investigation was “crazy and self-centered.”

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