Rep. Gates pleads no contest in tax case
State Rep. Mickey Gates, of Hot Springs, pleaded no contest Monday in Garland County Circuit Court in connection with his failure to pay taxes.
Gates had failed to file state income tax returns from 2003 through 2017, according to court documents.
In connection with the plea for the Class D felony, Gates has agreed to pay a minimum restitution of $74,789.89 and complete six years of probation.
According to reports, Gates entered his plea under Act 346. Under this law, the judge is allowed to dismiss a case for a first-time offender after the person fulfills his probation and other obligations under the plea deal.
According to court documents, Gates told police he had not filed individual income taxes from 2003 through 2015 “because he is under the impression that DFA (Department of Finance and Administration) completed and filed those returns on his behalf.”
He would later tell police, “first of all, all of this is my responsibility … had I done everything right and correct; even if I was audited I still would not have all of the other late consequences. So, I don’t ever want to make it sound like it’s not my fault.
Gates, who was first elected to the House of Representatives in 2015, was re-elected in November. Gates defeated opponent Kevin Rogers by receiving more than 68 percent of the vote.