Actor Alec Baldwin has been accused of dodging taxes after lawyers for an art gallery owner filed a motion in the New York State Supreme Court this week.
Baldwin, who recently portrayed Donald Trump during several “SNL” skits, was accused of failing to pay sales tax on a painting he bought from gallery owner Mary Boone six years ago, The New York Times reported. Baldwin several weeks ago sued Boone, claiming she defrauded him at the time for Ross Bleckner’s “Sea and Mirror” painting, for which he paid $190,000. His suit claims Boone sold him a slightly different painting that was brighter in color but had the same gallery inventory number that was given to the 1996 painting that he wanted to purchase.
Boone, however, fired back at Baldwin’s accusations.
Her attorney insisted that Baldwin knew he wasn’t getting an original, the New York Daily News reported. “While Ms. Boone remains a highly respected gallerist in New York and abroad, this incident has only proven that Mr. Baldwin is in need of anger management and an art history lesson,” Boone’s lawyer, Ted Poretz, said.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Boone’s lawyers claim the actor waited too long to bring his lawsuit to court, while also accusing him of dodging New York state and city taxes by having the artwork shipped to his house in California after it was purchased. He then sent it back to New York City, the suit alleges.
“Baldwin’s fraud saved him $16,625 in sales tax,” court documents filed for Boone reds, the WSJ reported. “He cannot at the same time commit a fraud of his own and ask the Court to exercise its discretion to award him punitive damages.”
John C. Hueston, a lawyer for Baldwin, described the new tax allegations “a diversionary tactic that does not answer the fraud allegations,” and said that “we will not dignify that with a response at this time.”