A two-time Grammy award winning artist from the Hudson Valley avoided paying $1.7 million in taxes.

Earl Simmons, 46, of Yonkers pleaded guilty on Thursday in Manhattan federal court to one count of tax fraud for not paying income taxes from 2010 through 2016.

The rapper known as “DMX,” avoided paying $1.7 million in taxes, officials say.

“Today, Earl Simmons, the actor, producer and recording artist known as DMX, admitted to systematically cheating on his taxes. By insisting to be paid in cash whenever possible and having royalty payments diverted to the accounts of financial surrogates, Simmons concealed hundreds of thousands of dollars of income from the IRS,” Acting U.S. Attorney Joon H. Kim said in a press release. “Today, Simmons made a choice between ‘Right or Wrong,’ and did the right thing, admitting his guilt, and agreeing to pay his tax liabilities. No matter who you are or whatever fame you may have achieved, the law applies equally to all, and no one is exempt from the shared obligation to pay our taxes.”

Beginning in 1997, Simmons released a series of hip-hop albums that sold millions of records. Many of his albums went platinum DMX also performed at venues across the United States and around the world and has acted in movies. He won a Grammy for favorite hip-hop artist in 2000 and 2001.

During the period from 2010 through 2015, Simmons earned over $2.3 million, but did not file personal income tax returns during that time period. Instead, he orchestrated a scheme to evade payment of his outstanding tax liabilities, largely by maintaining a cash lifestyle, avoiding the use of a personal bank account and using the bank accounts of other associates, according to court proceedings.

“Mr. Simmons skirted his responsibilities when he chose to ignore his duty to pay his taxes. We should not forget that the ultimate victims in tax fraud cases are the honest US taxpayers who file and pay their taxes, IRS-CI Special Agent in Charge James D. Robnett said. This guilty plea shows that IRS-Criminal Investigation is working to ensure all taxpayers file and pay their fair share.”

Simmons faces up to five years in prison when sentenced in March.

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