Hamline law professor charged for evading taxes

  • Article by: BOB VON STERNBERG
  • a nd JOY POWELL
  • September 9, 2009 - 8:40 PM

An associate law professor at Hamline University whose law school bio lists tax law as one of her specialties was charged Wednesday with multiple counts of tax fraud and evasion.

Robin K. Magee, 46, of St. Paul, was charged in Ramsey County District Court with 11 counts of failing to file a tax return, filing a false or fraudulent return, and failing to pay taxes during a four-year period.

Magee, a longtime activist with the NAACP who has protested cases of police brutality, did not immediately return calls or e-mails Wednesday from Star Tribune reporters.

According to the criminal complaint, Magee owes the state $4,938 for tax years 2004 through 2007.

The alleged non-payments were discovered in an investigation by the Minnesota Department of Revenue; the agency's records also show that Magee "has a history of failing to timely file Minnesota income tax returns."

Between 1991 and 2003, she filed only one tax return, in 1997, within the required time, the department said. Magee, who has been employed by Hamline for 17 years, told an investigator "she teaches classes on race and religion and is not familiar with tax law," the complaint states.

However, according to her Hamline biography, tax law was one of the areas she "concentrated in" while in private practice.

Despite the charges, Magee will continue to teach this fall, said Cynthia Bielke, a spokeswoman for Hamline University School of Law. Magee will teach criminal procedure and a seminar on race and the law.

"We feel that this is a personal issue and that it would not be appropriate for us to comment on this at this time," Bielke said of the charges.

Magee also teaches courses on criminal law, property and police practices, the law school's website says.

She is scheduled to make her first court appearance Oct. 26.

The case is being prosecuted by the Dakota County attorney's office to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest involving the Ramsey County attorney's office, said Paul Gustafson, a spokesman for the Ramsey County prosecutors. He said that in post-trial hearings involving the man convicted of killing St. Paul police officer Gerald Vick, for example, Magee had publicly criticized Ramsey County's case against the man.

Bob von Sternberg • 612-673-7184 Joy Powell • 952-882-9017

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