Federal prosecutors are pouring it on against one of the indicted national leaders of the anti-government "sovereign citizens" movement.
Samuel Davis is set to stand trial on money-laundering charges with another alleged leader of the group in federal court later this month. The charges are the result of a three-year undercover FBI investigation that ended in March 2009.
Agents assigned to the Southern Nevada Joint Terrorism Task Force had infiltrated the group, which taught its anti-government leanings to a nationwide following out of a local print shop.
Davis, who lives in Idaho, is among tens of thousands of other Americans who have declared themselves sovereign citizens above the government’s jurisdiction and not obligated to pay taxes.
So it comes as no surprise that prosecutors have filed court papers alleging they intend to present evidence at the trial that Davis also evaded $230,000 in taxes. He set up a phony business called Select Business Services to hide his personal financial transactions, prosecutors allege.
Davis, who likes to go by the name "I am: Sam" as a symbol of his refusal to recognize the establishment, has not yet been charged with tax evasion. But prosecutors say he hasn’t filed a tax return since 1998.
Davis and his co-defendant, Shawn Rice, a self-proclaimed lawyer and rabbi who lives in Arizona, have been charged with laundering more than $1.2 million through undercover FBI agents.
Both defendants contend they were entrapped.