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Chris Zorich gets probation for failing to pay taxes

Chris Zorich Bears Getty Images

Former Bears and Redskins defensive tackle Chris Zorich has been sentenced to probation for failing to pay taxes.

Zorich, who pleaded guilty in March to misdemeanor charges of failing to file federal income tax returns, got three years of probation today, according to the Chicago Tribune. He could have been sentenced to up to 16 months in prison.
Zorich, 44, faced up to 16 months in prison under federal sentencing guidelines.

Zorich made more than $1 million from 2006 to 2009 but he didn’t file tax returns on any of that income.

Zorich was often praised, both during his Hall of Fame college career at Notre Dame and during his time with the Bears, for his charitable endeavors. But the Chris Zorich Charitable Foundation mismanaged its money, and after the Illinois attorney general’s office investigated, Zorich agreed to pay back $350,000 in unaccounted for funds from the charity. As part of an agreement to end the attorney general’s investigation, Zorich promised not to take a leading role in any charity in Illinois again.

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10 Responses to “Chris Zorich gets probation for failing to pay taxes”
  1. j0esixpack says: Jul 12, 2013 6:45 PM

    I’d say this guy got off pretty lucky. The feds don’t seem to take kindly to millionaires who may claim ignorance that they have to pay taxes EVERY year – not just every now and then.

    While it sounds like he may have legitimately trying to do good with his charitable foundation, there’s no shortage of folks who set up such foundations as a tax shelter and place personal expenses within the non-profit charity.

    Although he doesn’t look like a rocket scientist in that photo (making “ignorance” that much more plausible) he must legitimately be a good guy if the feds let him off that easy.

  2. jda129 says: Jul 12, 2013 7:17 PM

    Sounds like they need a segment at the rookie symposium on paying your taxes. It must only be by a miracle that the rest of us amateurs figured out Life 101.

  3. jaishenreeder says: Jul 12, 2013 9:11 PM

    Same guy who used man hole covers in lieu of barbell plates growing up b/c he was so poor.

  4. gbfan says: Jul 12, 2013 9:12 PM

    I grew up in SW Wisconsin and we used to go watch the Bears practice in Platteville when I was a kid. Chris Zorich was one of the few that would sign an autograph for literally any and every kid that wanted one. He seemed like a genuinely good guy then, hopefully he still is and that’s why the investigation was called off.

  5. hatesycophants says: Jul 12, 2013 9:48 PM

    For me, this is just plain stealing from your fellow citizens. Pay your freaking taxes or stop using our stuff!

  6. quicktaker says: Jul 12, 2013 10:28 PM

    Do you want to make a difference? Tutor kids, feed crack baby orphans, coach sports, clean neighborhood parks. Stop patting yourself on the back for writing checks to sleazy sports charitable foundations.

  7. sportsmeccabi says: Jul 12, 2013 10:29 PM

    I thought we no longer lock people up for debts.

  8. dmvtransplant says: Jul 12, 2013 10:34 PM

    When Illinois say’s your corrupt that really makes a statement.

  9. softhelmet says: Jul 13, 2013 2:13 AM

    If part of the agreement with the attorney general was not to take a leading role in any charity what this tells me is this guy was probably bilking the charity along.

  10. bobbyhoying says: Jul 13, 2013 4:54 AM

    How soon we forget the Secretary of the Treasury forgot to pay taxes. The system is a joke. A national sales tax would give everyone the opportunity to pay. Maybe the shared pain would cause the population to vote with more due diligence.

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