Friday, July 21, 2006
Creationist Kent Hovind was arrested and plead not guilty in a Florida federal court to 58 charges of filing a frivolous lawsuits, false complaints, making threats against investigators and those cooperating with the investigation, and includes failing to pay $473,818 in employee-related taxes.
Last Thursday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Miles Davis heard the charges in which Kent Hovind professed not to understand why he is being prosecuted asserting “I still don’t understand what I’m being charged for and who is charging me.”
Legal and taxes issues are nothing new for Kent Hovind, who often calls himself “Dr. Dino.” He has been in legal trouble with the IRS for at least 17 years on his claims that he is employed by God, receives no income, has no expenses and owns no property.
Hovind’s attorney, Assistant Public Defender Kafahni Nkrumah, told U.S. Magistrate Judge Miles Davis that the Hovinds “did not want to enter a plea because he does not believe the United States, the Internal Revenue Service and the U.S. Attorney’s Office “have jurisdiction in this matter.”
When Davis said he would enter a plea for Hovind if he continued to refuse, Hovind said he was entering a not guilty plea “under duress.” In the exchange Davis asked Hovind “if he wrote and spoke English, this man who claims a doctorate said, ‘To some degree’.”
Jo Hovind, who is facing 44 charges stood with her husband’s hand on her shoulder and “reiterated the gist of his statements.”
U.S. District Judge Casey Rodgers will preside over the September 5th trial.
Davis made Hovind surrender his passport, guns, and will not allow him to leave the court’s juristition since they consider him a flight risk. On July 21, 2006 a missionary group in South Africa filed a petition to lift the travel restrictions. In part, Hovind claims the travel restrictions “violate the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.”
Hovind’s public defender Kafahni Nkrumah, states “Mr. Hovind contends that the conditions imposed upon him by Magistrate Davis impose a burden on the free exercise of defendant’s religion, in violation of the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.”
No date to hear the appeal against the travel restrictions is scheduled.