FarrellFeds cut N.H. tax evaders' utilitiesFri Jun 15, 2007 01:24June 14, 2007, 1:58AM
Feds cut N.H. tax evaders' utilities
© 2007 The Associated Press
PLAINFIELD, N.H. — Federal authorities have cut phone, power and Internet service at the fortified compound of a couple convicted of tax evasion who have refused to report to prison.
It's unclear what effect that has on Ed and Elaine Brown, who have solar and wind power generators at their 110-acre spread, where they have been holed up for months.
Authorities say they don't think the Browns' equipment is sufficient to keep the home running for long.
U.S. Marshal Steve Monier acknowledged Wednesday that waiting out the Browns could take months, but he said time was on authorities' side. He said he hoped prison would seem like an agreeable option for the Browns after a summer without air conditioning and possibly a winter without heat.
The Browns, who insist federal income tax laws are invalid, were sentenced to 5 1/2 years in prison in April. Authorities surrounded their property last week and cut its utilities this week.
"We have seized their phone and Internet service, and two days ago, we cut their power," Monier said. "It's a continuing effort to move them along to understand they need to do the right thing, and this is to surrender to us."
Monier said last week's heavy law enforcement presence was a surveillance mission. Ed Brown predicted then that authorities would try to take him by force.
But Monier said he has no interest in raiding the house or harming the Browns. He said he just wants justice served.
"It's unfortunate that the Browns are taking this position they have been throughout the process," Monier said. "There's been an outcome, and they need to surrender."
Alice man holed up in N.H. home with tax protesters
PICTURED: This photo of Cirino Gonzalez, downloaded from his mySpace.com page, depicts him with a rifle.
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