Christian Who Refused to Pay Taxes Because They Fund Abortions Beats IRS, Case Ends in Mistrial by MICAIAH BILGER for Life News
For now at least, a pro-life Christian from Oregon will not be punished for failing to pay his taxes because he opposes the killing of unborn babies.
KGW News 8 reports the case against Michael Bowman, of Columbia City, ended in a mistrial Friday in federal court. The jury deliberated for 11 hours but could not come to a verdict in the case, according to the report.
Bowman has refused to pay income taxes or file tax returns for more than two decades, National Review reported earlier this year. He repeatedly has made it very clear why: He believes unborn babies are valuable human beings, and killing them is wrong.
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His attorney, Matthew Schindler, said the IRS did not take action against his client for almost 20 years. He said this led his client to believe that the IRS made an exception for his deeply-held religious views.
“The problem is, is when you don’t enforce the law then someone who takes that kind of principle position starts to believe, I’m right, I’m right, I’m doing this the right way, and what I’ve said is correct, and otherwise the IRS would do something,” Schindler said.
Bowman is a self-employed computer software developer who owes at least $800,000 in back taxes, according to the Herald. If convicted, he could have faced an additional $25,000 in fines and jail time.
However, because of the mistrial, the government will have to refile charges against him. His lawyer told the local news that they are scheduled to meet with the judge later this week.
“They want to make sure that everyone knows you can’t object to abortion and not pay your taxes, and it concerns me as a taxpayer because at the end of the day who cares if Mr. Bowman doesn’t file a form if the government’s out doing its job, which is to clean out his bank account, take his car, and collect taxes,” Schindler said.