NEW YORK (AP) — DMX is counting on a little rap to help him beat the rap at his tax evasion sentencing.
Attorney Murray Richman said in a court document made public on Monday that he wants to play a few DMX compositions at Thursday’s sentencing in Manhattan for the rapper also known as Earl Simmons.
The lawyer said the music will help U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff “understand him genuinely in his voice” since DMX may be too emotional to speak.
DMX, 47, has been incarcerated since his bail was revoked in January by Rakoff, who scolded him for failing to obey bail conditions.
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DMX, whose hits include “X Gon’ Give it to Ya,” has appreciated his time at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan and is “sober now and invigorated,” Richman wrote.
“It was a salvation of sort to shut out the noise,” Richman said. The lawyer sent the judge lyrics to “Slippin'” and “The Convo,” among other compositions.
“It is raw Earl,” the lawyer said. “We are not here or desirous of molding him into what some may want to see; Earl is uniquely him and that is both his beauty of mind and his genius.”
Richman suggested “a unique resolution,” including an up to 60-day study of his client by qualified consultants rather than prison, might help Simmons be deemed rehabilitated and enable him to return to the stage, where he can earn money to pay back $1.7 million in taxes and support his 15 children.
DMX had a busy concert schedule booked through July when his bail was revoked.
He pleaded guilty to a tax evasion charge in November, the culmination of a federal investigation that determined he had failed to pay taxes on millions of dollars in income amassed from 2002 through 2005 as his hip-hop records sold millions.
In papers filed last week, prosecutors called DMX’s crime brazen and sought a five-year prison sentence.
They urged Rakoff to use the sentencing “to send the message to this defendant and others that star power does not entitle someone to a free pass.”
The government said DMX was trying to shift blame for his tax payment failure to managers and attorneys.
It said he earned more than $2.3 million from 2010 through 2015 but paid nothing toward tax liabilities. Prosecutors said he arranged for hundreds of thousands of dollars of music royalties to be deposited into the bank accounts of managers and then portions disbursed to him in cash or used to pay his expenses.
They said he also demanded that his $125,000 payment in 2011 and 2012 for participating in “Couples Therapy,” a reality TV show, be reissued without withholding taxes.