Tuesday 28 January 2020

Derek: Snipes juggled legal battles

Wesley Snipes began his prison sentence for tax evasion in 2010
Wesley Snipes began his prison sentence for tax evasion in 2010

Derek Griffiths has told how Wesley Snipes juggled court dates with his acting work during his trial for tax evasion.

The Expendables 3 star was sentenced to three years in prison in 2008 after failing to file income tax returns. He began his jail term in December 2010.

Veteran British actor Derek, 68 - who features in a brand new series of CBeebies show Sarah & Duck - worked on a film with Wesley during his trial.

Derek revealed: "I did a film, we shot six years ago in Namibia; it was a sort of horror Western with Wesley Snipes called Gallowwalkers; that sat on the shelf for six years. He went off to prison because he was involved in tax problems; it sat on the shelf, and it's just been released on DVD. It was great fun to do."

He went on: "I was playing a Spaniard with a very thick accent who stripped the skin off humans and made leather out of it. Quite a nasty piece. I loved it. There wasn't a Jemima or Humpty in sight, ha ha.

"Wesley was interesting; he was quiet. It was a tough job. We were out in the desert filming in 122 degrees every day from 4am 'til 10pm; you certainly earned your money there. He had a lot on his plate because he had the lawyers on his back. He flew back actually one weekend to go and appear in court, and he was told he could finish the film."

Wesley recently returned to the big screen in The Expendables 3 and makes a joke about his tax evasion in the movie.

PA Media

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