The unrepentant con man is getting shuffled around a lot, lately; he was in a Colorado prison for a while, then New Hampshire, then Alabama, Georgia, and is now locked up in the Santa Rosa County Jail in Milton, Florida. It was all apparently part of phasing him in for a new trial in Florida.
Hovind, 61, is approaching the end of that sentence, but he is now facing a new suite of charges on allegations that he tried to stymie the government’s efforts to collect on his outstanding debt.
According to an Oct. 21 federal indictment filed against Hovind and Paul John Hansen — a Nebraska man known for his vigorous opposition of government tax and property laws — the duo has been charged with mail fraud and criminal contempt for interfering with the sale of Pensacola properties Hovind was forced to forfeit as a result of the 2006 case.
The indictment says that in 2011, Hansen filed liens on nine of Hovind’s forfeited properties on North Palafox Street, Cummings Road and Oleander Drive.
In 2012 the government was granted an injunction ordering that neither Hovind nor any agent acting on his behalf file or attempt to file any "liens, notices, financing titles and claims of whatever nature … to cloud the title of the properties."
The following year, both Hovind and Hansen reportedly mailed additional documents disputing the ownership of the property.
Both men were charged with mail fraud, attempt and conspiracy to commit mail fraud and criminal contempt. Mail fraud can be punishable by up to 20 years in prison and as much as $500,000 in fines when involving an organization.
20 years sounds high, especially when the original crimes netted him just a 10 year sentence. If you didn’t follow the original case, here’s all you need to know.
According to the IRS, Hovind’s theme park and merchandise sales earned more than $5 million from 1999 to March 2004. About half of that income went to employees who were salaried or were paid hourly wages. The government believes that grew to the point of earning $2 million a year.
Hovind and his wife paid no taxes on the revenue from the park.
It was an open-and-shut case, and Hovind didn’t help himself by trying to argue that he owed no taxes because his property was a sovereign state under God, not the US government, and that he didn’t have to pay taxes on his employees, because they were missionaries, likewise working directly for God.
By the way, you can follow the adventures of Kent Hovind, convict, on his blog. It’s not updated very often — the last direct message from Kent himself was late in 2011 — and now it’s mostly short chronicles of the latest prison shuffle, written by his son, Eric. It all suggests a kind of slow deterioration of the guy.
Don’t miss the Christmas story from 2012. It’ll make you wonder if they don’t shovel the sense of humor out of fanatical Christian brains with a spoon.