Rep. Gates pleads no con­test in tax case

The Saline Courier - - FRONT PAGE - By Sarah Perry [email protected]­ton­courier.com

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.

Gates

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