Wife of Kent Hovind follows him to prison

PENSACOLA – The wife of a Pensacola evangelist was sentenced to a year and a day in federal prison Friday on federal tax charges.

Jo Hovind, 51, is married to creationist theme park founder Kent Hovind.

A jury convicted her of 45 counts involving evading bank reporting requirements in November.

Her husband, founder of Creation Science Evangelism and Pensacola’s defunct Dinosaur Adventure Land, was found guilty in November of 58 federal counts, including failure to pay $845, 000 in employee-related taxes. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison for tax fraud and ordered to pay $640, 000 in restitution to the Internal Revenue Service.

The theme park used dinosaur display to show visitors his view that humans and dinosaurs coexisted and that evolution did not occur.

Jo Hovind’s attorney, Jerry Barringer, said after the sentencing that he plans to file an appeal against the guilty verdict as well as the prison sentence.

Kent Hovind claimed he and his employees were workers of God and therefore exempt from paying taxes. He paid his employees in cash and did not withhold their taxes or pay his share as an employer.

Jo Hovind also was ordered to pay $8, 000 in fines and three years supervision when she is released from prison.

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Religion News Blog posted this on Monday July 2, 2007.
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