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story.lead_photo.caption Garland County booking mug of Rep. Michael “Mickey” Gates.

HOT SPRINGS — All four circuit court judges in Garland County have recused themselves from a felony case filed against a state lawmaker accused of not filing an income tax return for 15 years.

Rep. Mickey Gates surrendered to authorities last month and was released from jail on $1,500 bond. The Hot Springs Sentinel-Record reports the judges have asked the Arkansas Supreme Court to appoint a special judge from outside the county to hear the case.

Gates is charged with not filing returns from 2012 through 2017, but authorities say he hadn't filed one since 2003. The statute of limitations for failing for file or pay returns is six years.

An attorney for Gates has said Gates was surprised by the charges and had been cooperating with authorities in trying to pay the back taxes.

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  • dumblikeme
    July 12, 2018 at 12:49 p.m.

    Reminds me of a joke: Why don't snakes bite attorneys?
    Professional courtesy.

  • skeptic1
    July 12, 2018 at 1:18 p.m.

    I think this is the judges' way of saying the law is unjust and they want no part of it. Gates had filed his taxes and was working out a settlement, the prosecutor, like with Bobby McAllister, used the law to exact a political wound.

  • LRCrookAttorney
    July 12, 2018 at 2:47 p.m.

    Why do attorneys take viagra?
    To get taller!

  • JMort69
    July 12, 2018 at 9:21 p.m.

    Or, perhaps this is about the good ole' boy network. As a successful small business owner for 46 years, if I had missed filing forms with any taxing agency for 15 years, I would be in the pokey. This guy gets by with it to the tune of $265,000.00. If I miss one small payment, everyone is on my butt. So, please, don't try to blame "the law". Thank goodness, my father taught me the first thing you do is pay your taxes. This guy is about as much a business person as a doodle-bug. Just more corruption in our state government. both on the part of this legislator and on the part of the DFA for letting this go on so long. Time to get rid of the crooks and charlatans in our state government and start over. And, this time, "Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's": Matthew 22:21.