On Monday (July 18), Rule (born Jeffrey Atkins) was sentenced to 28 months in prison to run concurrently with his existing sentence for failing to file tax returns with the IRS for more than $1.1 million in taxes.
Rule’s attorney, Stacey Richman, called it a fair sentence, and said she was grateful the judge was not swayed to give a harsher sentence due to the rapper’s tough public persona.
In December 2010, Rule (35) pleaded guilty to attempted gun possession stemming from a 2007 arrest. He turned himself in June 8 to begin the sentence, at which time he was hit with the additional time by a New Jersey federal court. The sentence was the result of the rapper’s admission in March of this year that he failed to file taxes for money earned from 2004 to 2006.
When handing down the sentence, U.S. Judge Patty Shwartz said, “Taxpayers do not have the luxury of deciding whether to comply with the laws.”
The added time means that, in theory, Ja Rule will serve the full 28 months sentence regardless of whether his current New York state sentence ends early. If the rapper serves the entire 24 months of his current incarceration, he will be liable to serve the extra four months. However, “good behavior” could secure him a shorter federal sentence.