The richest Black man in America is under investigation for income tax evasion. Billionaire philanthropist Robert F. Smith is under investigation for possible income tax evasion.
Smith made headlines in 2019 when he and his wife, Hope Dworaczyk Smith, generously paid off student loan debts for Morehouse College’s entire 2019 graduating class.
The pledge was worth $40 million and is the largest single gift in the school’s history. Apparently, Smith planned to use the massive pledge as a $40 million tax write off.
According to Vladtv.com, for four years, federal authorities have been investigating Vista Equity Partners firm for failure to pay taxes on about $200 million in assets transferred from Vista’s first private equity fund to offshore banks.
High-income individuals typically transfer millions or billions to offshore banks in the Caribbean and Europe to avoid paying taxes in the United States.
Forbes.com reports Smith hopes to resolve the Justice Department’s case with a civil settlement in order to prevent resigning from Vista’s board or serving time in prison.
The billionaire has also asked for leniency in exchange for his cooperation with another investigation involving Robert Brockman, who worked with Smith on projects involving offshore entities, trusts, and foundations.
Smith is reportedly willing to cooperate with additional investigations as well. Vista Equity Partners, which manages $65 billion in assets, has not commented on the investigation.