Monday (May 6), multi-Grammy award winner Lauryn Hill was sentenced to three months in federal prison for failure to pay taxes on income made from 2005-2007.
After postponing the sentencing from April 22 to May 6 to allow Hill to come up with approximately $970,000, U.S. Magistrate Judge Madeline Cox Arleo also sentenced Hill to three months of home confinement with electronic monitoring after the three month stint. In addition, the singer must serve a year of supervised release and pay a $60,000 fine in addition to paying the full balance of her tax debt. This sentence was originally for several years with her lawyer Nathan Hochman fighting for probation.
During the sentencing on Monday, Hill explained she planned on paying the debt, but found it difficult since taking a hiatus from the music industry. “I needed to be able to earn so I could pay my taxes, without compromising the health and welfare of my children, and I was being denied that,” Hill told the judge.
Just last month, Hill issued a letter via Tumblr to announce a new label deal with Sony Worldwide Entertainment to release music that would help her pay the tax debts. Soon after, a song surfaced called Neurotic Society (Compulsory Mix) in which she spoke on society’s ills. "I have been working towards this for a long time, not just because of my current legal situation, but because I am an artist, I love to create, and I need the proper platform to do so," Hill wrote about the Sony deal.
Hill is scheduled to report for her prison sentence at an undisclosed prison on July 8.
We're thinking about you, Lauryn. Hang in there!