A federal judge has ruled that former NFL linebacker Bill Romanowski is on the hook for $5 million in back taxes stemming from a horse breeding scheme he got caught up in.


The U.S. Tax Court said that Bill, his wife Jill, and a business they created in 2003 wrongly took deductions stemming back to 1998. The deductions were related to the roughly $13 million the Romanowskis borrowed to invest in a breeding operation called ClassicStar. The company ended up going bankrupt and the principal owners were convicted of tax fraud. Naturally, the Romanowskis deducted their losses from that business as their own business losses.

On February 20th, Tax Court Judge Joseph Goeke ruled against the Romanowskis and hit them with the $5 million bill. The funny part is that the ruling came in response to a claim by the Romanowskis challenging that they owed taxes from the 2010 tax year. Oops!

The judge determined the Romanowskis weren’t liable for about $950,000 in penalties the IRS assessed on the unpaid taxes. They can appeal the decision.

The Romanowskis have not been reached for comment.

Naturally, this new finding is related to Romanowski having once been an Oakland Raider, and has nothing to do with the championship teams he played on as a Denver Bronco.

[Denver Post]