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History of IRS Abuse
Martin Luther King Jr.

King waves after delivering his "I Have a Dream" speech, 28 August 1963 at the Lincoln Memorial, Washington D.C. Photo from Wikimedia. 


Beginning in the late 1950s, the civil rights leader, several of his lawyers, and members of the Southern Christian Leadership Council were audited repeatedly by the IRS and the state of Alabama. King eventually settled charges against him, repaying $500 to Alabama for a deduction he was unable to document. Still, the authorities were not finished with him: King became the first person ever prosecuted by the state on criminal tax charges. He was forced to provide his private diary as evidence that he had committed no wrongdoing.


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