The Internal Revenue Service has charged PGA champion golfer Jim Thorpe with income tax evasion for failing to pay $1.6 million in back taxes.

Prosecutors filed a seven-count complaint against Thorpe, 60, accusing him of failing to timely file his income tax returns for 2002, 2003 and 2004, and to timely file a corporate tax return for his business, JLT Inc., for 2003. He also allegedly failed to pay personal income taxes in 2002, 2003 and 2004.

If convicted, Thorpe faces up to seven years in jail, a $3.2 million fine and seven years’ probation. The golfer, who lives in Heathrow, Fla., was scheduled to play in the Allianz Championship tournament in Boca Raton.

He is a three-time winner on the PGA Tour, according to GolfWeek, and has won 13 times on the Champions Tour. On the two tours, he has earned a total of nearly $17 million, but back in 2005 he donated $247,500 in winnings from one tournament to his church.

Thorpe’s attorney, Mark L. Horowitz, said in a statement that Thorpe has been in discussions with the IRS for over a year about the taxes. “Mr. Thorpe did not willfully violate the tax laws and looks forward to refuting these charges at trial,” he said.

Register or login for access to this item and much more

All Accounting Today content is archived after seven days.

Community members receive:
  • All recent and archived articles
  • Conference offers and updates
  • A full menu of enewsletter options
  • Web seminars, white papers, ebooks

Don't have an account? Register for Free Unlimited Access