A woman who worked for Michael Jackson and Marion Barry appeared in a D.C. courtroom Wednesday to plead guilty to failing to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in taxes.
Raymone Bain, high-profile publicist and press secretary was a defendant at the hearing, signing a plea deal. The years she failed to file taxes were during the time she was working for Michael Jackson. When he fired her, she filed suit against him.
Bain admitted that she went for three years without filing tax returns and owes the U.S. and D.C. governments hundreds of thousands of dollars. She wouldn’t comment to an ABC7 reporter.
Bain was Marion Barry's press secretary during much of his second term as mayor in the mid-90s. She also represented a number of music and sports celebrities from tennis player Venus Williams to the music group Boys to Men. Her biggest role was as president and CEO of the late Michael Jackson’s business affairs as well as Jackson’s spokesperson, including during his 2005 trial on sex charges.
Prosecutors noted she made $30,000 a month working for Jackson alone. Now a councilman, Barry said Wednesday he was unaware of Bain's tax troubles:
"I think anyone's tax issues are between them and the IRS,” he said.
However, attorney Federick Cooke who represents Barry on most legal issues was also representing Bain. He declined to comment.
Bain pleaded guilty to willful failure to file both U.S. and D.C. taxes between 2006 and 2008, a tax loss to the government prosecutors said of between $200,000 and $400,000.
Bain has agreed to pay all back taxes, penalties and interest. She was released on her own recognizance and prosecutors dropped a demand she surrender her passport when she said she had upcoming business trips to England and Japan.
Bain could face up to 24 months in prison, but that seems unlikely.