Thursday, December 2, 2010

Wesley Snipes Ordered to Turn Self in to Federal Prison

Actor Wesley Snipes was ordered this week to turn himself in to a federal prison in western Pennsylvania to serve his sentence for tax-related crimes, a court document made public Wednesday shows.

The U.S. Marshals Service, in a letter dated Tuesday, said Snipes must report to Federal Correctional Institution McKean, in Lewis Run, Pa., no later than 12 p.m., Dec. 9.

The prison is a medium-security facility for men about 90 miles south of Buffalo, N.Y. It has a capacity of 784 prisoners, according to "The Federal Prison System" by Mary Bosworth, though it housed nearly 1,400 men in 2002. The federal Bureau of Prisons says it operates a prison camp as a satellite facility that houses minimum-security male offenders.

Federal prosecutors in Central Florida argued Snipes obstructed the IRS and attempted to avoid paying millions of dollars in taxes.

Snipes, 48, the Orlando-born star of the "Blade" trilogy, "White Men Can't Jump" and "Jungle Fever," was convicted in 2008 of three misdemeanor counts of willfully failing to file federal tax returns.

He was ordered to serve three years in prison.

Last month, a federal judge rejected Snipes' demand for a new trial and ordered the Jones High School graduate to surrender to federal authorities.

The Marshals Service's letter to Snipes said failure to report to the prison on time may result in additional criminal charges. He was not in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons on Wednesday, according to the agency's website.


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Ugly Betty Actor Michael Brea Kills Mother with Sword

A crazed bit actor wielding an ornate Freemason sword hacked his mother to death early Tuesday in their New York apartment while screaming out Bible passages and Masonic references, police and witnesses said.

"Repent! Repent! Repent!" Michael Brea, screamed at his 55-year-old mother, Yannick, during his bizarre meltdown and the subsequent bloodbath at their Brooklyn, N.Y., apartment, neighbors said.

Brea, 31, who had roles in "Ugly Betty" and the movie "Step Up 3D," was heard repeatedly through the door shouting about the "architect of the universe," a term used by Freemasons to refer to a supreme being. Longtime family friend Sylvan Benoit confirmed that Brea was a member of the Freemasons and had been to a meeting earlier in the evening.

The Masonic sword was 3-feet long and meant for ceremonial use, police sources said.

When cops broke down the apartment door at around 2 a.m., they Tasered and arrested Brea, and charged him with murder.

He was taken to Bellevue Hospital for psychiatric evaluation, and allegedly blurted out, "When I looked at my mother, I saw the devil."


Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Randy Quaid and Wife Skip Court Hearing

It's been a familiar question for more than a year at the Santa Barbara courthouse where judges, prosecutors and even Randy and Evi Quaid's own attorney have worked overtime to try to get the couple to appear for two felony court cases.

Last year, the search centered on Texas, but in recent weeks the focus on the Quaids' whereabouts has shifted to Canada, where they are seeking asylum from a mysterious syndicate they've dubbed "Hollywood star-whackers."

In the latest case, Santa Barbara Superior Court Judge Donna Geck was the one asking about the actor and his wife's whereabouts Tuesday. They had been scheduled to appear for an arraignment on felony vandalism charges, but for the third time in two weeks, failed to appear.

The result was an arrest warrant issued for Evi Quaid, who also forfeited $500,000 bail. The judge agreed to hold off on issuing a warrant for Randy Quaid's arrest until Nov. 16 so that he could attend a Canadian immigration proceeding next week.

With a string of missed court appearances and bizarre behavior both in and out of the courthouse, that hearing may give the Quaids their last chance to address the vandalism case voluntarily. Their attorney, Robert Sanger, acknowledged Tuesday that there is talk of bounty hunters pursuing his clients.

Sanger told Geck that Evi Quaid didn't appear in court because she didn't want to leave her husband alone.

It wasn't a valid legal reason for Evi Quaid's absence, Sanger conceded, but he also said he was looking into whether the couple's stated fears may have some legitimacy.

The couple are accused of living in the guest house of a home they once owned. Sanger said he suspected forgery on the home's deed transferring ownership from the Quaids in early 1990s, but he needed more time to be sure.

"There may be a claim of right — as strange as that may seem — to the property in this case," Sanger said.

Strange circumstances have defined the Quaids since September 2009, when they were accused of defrauding an innkeeper of more than $10,000. The money was repaid, and the case was finally resolved in April, but not until after several missed court appearances, warrants and the couple ending up in handcuffs.

Their infrequent appearances have seemed more akin to the quirky characters Randy Quaid excelled at playing in films such as "National Lampoon's Vacation" and "Independence Day," than the roles that won him Oscar and Emmy nominations. He and his wife were once freed after convincing a West Texas sheriff to drive them to the bank so they could post bail. At a later hearing in Santa Barbara, Randy Quaid brought along his Golden Globe Award, which he earned for a TV movie role in the late 1980s.

The actor was cleared in the innkeeper case, while his wife pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor and was placed on three years probation. The couple was ostensibly free, with no more court dates and no formal supervision.

Then in September, the alarm at the Quaids' former home in Santa Barbara. Deputies were called and arrested the couple on suspicion of illegally squatting in the guest house.

The damage they allegedly caused scared the home's current owners, who sought and were granted temporary restraining orders against the actor and his wife.

The Quaids had disabled the home's security system, removed cameras, blocked the front door with heavy pots and dismantled a children's wooden play structure to erect barriers in the foliage, according to a declaration filed by homeowner Lannette Turicchi.

Evi Quaid showed up days after her arrest at Turicchi's home near Los Angeles and threatened her, according to the restraining order document.

Since mid-October, the Quaids have been in Canada, Sanger said Tuesday. They were arrested days after missing their arraignment on the vandalism case in a posh Vancouver shopping area.

They immediately sought refugee status, and through an attorney, said they were afraid of "Hollywood star-whackers" who they say may have contributed to the deaths of stars such as David Carradine and Heath Ledger. Carradine was found hanging in a Bangkok hotel room, and Ledger died of accidental drug overdose in New York City.

Sanger didn't reference the "star-whackers" Tuesday in court, nor did he answer reporter's questions after the hearing. He urged patience, both from Geck and prosecutor Anthony Harris.

There are no guarantees that Quaids will show up on Nov. 16, other than they risk losing more bail collateral and getting arrested again.

But if they do, there are two judges who would like to see them — the one who will handle their arraignment on the vandalism charges, and another considering whether to issue a lengthy restraining order keeping them away from the Turicchi family and their homes.


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Charlie Sheen Allegedly Trashes New York Hotel Room

Charlie Sheen flew back to Los Angeles last night after a wild time in New York.

Early yesterday morning, security at the Plaza Hotel had called police to report Sheen had trashed his room.

A law enforcement official says when officers arrived at 1:30 in the morning, Sheen appeared to be intoxicated. The official says a woman who'd been with him said they'd both been out drinking and partying, adding that when they got back to the room, Sheen was yelling and throwing furniture around.

The Post reports that the actor began wrecking his room after accusing a prostitute of stealing his wallet and cell phone, while his children slept in a nearby room.

A source told The Post that the petrified prostitute phoned a friend who was "working" elsewhere in The Plaza. The friend then alerted hotel staff, which dialed 911.

Police say Sheen was not arrested. Instead, he voluntarily went with authorities for a psychiatric evaluation at a hospital. Sheen's rep told that Sheen "had an adverse allergic reaction to some medication and was taken to the hospital."

Sheen's ex, Denise Richards, was staying at the same hotel with their two little girls.

"This is a very personal, private matter," Richards said in an interview Wednesday on Fox News.

"I'm not gonna comment on anything. I'm good. My girls are good," she said.

Richards was in town to promote her series "Blue Mountain State." Sheen, Richards and their children were spotted out and about in New York City last weekend, including a Broadway performance of "Mary Poppins."

Her two children were reportedly staying with Richards in her room. It is unclear if they accompanied the couple to the hospital.

Sheen currently stars on the CBS sitcom "Two and Half Men." He was arrested in Aspen, Colorado last year after an altercation with his then-wife Brooke Mueller, in which she called 911 saying that he had threatened her with a knife.

Sheen has two children with Richards, and two with Mueller.