• Family that says taxes are 'against God's will' still has to pay

    By: Natalie Dreier, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

    Updated:

    A family in Australia said paying income taxes "goes against God's will" so they didn't pay them. 

    But the courts disagreed and said that Fanny Alida Beerepoot and her brother Rembbertus Cornelis Beerepoot have to pay the tax bill. The judges said the pair didn't have a specific reference from the Bible that supported their view, ABC News in Australia reported.

    The Supreme Court of Tasmania said the pair didn't pay $930,000 in income taxes and that they had been served notices on their debt and for not filing tax returns. 

    Rembbertus Beerepoot said that the laws in Australia governing taxes go against the law of "Almighty God," Australia's ABC News reported.

    "We believe that the Constitution affirms the fact that the commonwealth resides within the jurisdiction of the law of the Almighty God and the law of the Almighty God is the supreme law of this land," Rembbertus Beerepoot said in court.

    The Beereppots had paid taxes in the past, before 2011, but said their deepened spirituality made them believe it was against the will of God and is against the First Commandment, according to Australia's ABC News.

    The family's property in Northern Tasmania was seized in 2017 and eventually sold after they would not pay property taxes on the 2.44 hectares over seven years.

    But the family told the court that they didn't own the land, "because we are his [God's]."

    The judge acknowledged the pair really did hold the beliefs and didn't just say they did to get out of paying taxes, ABC News in Australia reported.

    "If you can't find me a passage ... that says 'thou shall not pay tax' then, you see, I have difficulty finding a starting point," Justice Stephen Holt said, according to News in Australia.

    The justice ordered the Beerepoots to pay a total of more than $2.32 million for their tax debt, interest and court costs, ABC News reported.

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