Sporting superstar OJ Simpson is in danger of losing his Los Angeles estate and other property unless he pays US government agency the INLAND REVENUE SERVICE (IRS) the $685,248 (GBP360,656) he owes in 1994 taxes, interest and penalties.

Simpson, who made his name playing American football before becoming an actor, was infamously acquitted of the 1994 murders of his ex-wife NICOLE SIMPSON and her friend RON GOLDMAN. However, a civil suit brought by the victims' families found him liable for their deaths.

Now, the IRS are looking into Simpson's financial affairs, following suspicions he's living off cash and hiding his assets in an attempt to get out of paying any of the millions he was ordered to pay the victims' families, writes British newspaper the DAILY STAR SUNDAY.

The IRS placed a lien on the 57-year-old's possessions earlier this month (07MAY05) after several warnings, to guarantee payment.

IRS spokeswoman LAURIE KELEMAN says, "What we're doing is ensuring that the property is not sold so that we can get the money that is owed to us. We can seize the property."

His ex-agent MIKE GILBERT, who is also being investigated by the IRS, claims he hid $1 million (GBP526,000) of Simpson assets and failed to declare another $1 million made from memorabilia sales.

Gibson says, "I am not going to jail for OJ. I told him, 'I'm going to tell the truth about where the money went and how much you received.'

"The BBC agreed to pay OJ GBP22,000 but he wouldn't take a cheque. They went to the bank and got the money in hundred dollar bills. I watched OJ count every single bill before he'd do the interview."

Gibson alleges the BBC paid Simpson the cash for a 1998 interview with Ruby Wax, which was never screened following a storm of controversy over the payment.

23/05/2005 13:52