Veteran R+B singer Ronald Isley is appealing to U.S. President GEORGE W. Bush to pardon him following his conviction for tax evasion.
The Isley Brothers star, 65, was sentenced to three years behind bars last September (06) after he was found guilty in 2005 of evading federal income tax payments to the total of $3.1 million (GBP1.55 million) between 1997 and 2002.
America's Inland Revenue Service (IRS) accused Isley of hiding millions of dollars worth of assets in various bank accounts and with family members.
U.S. District Judge Dean Peterson labelled Isley "a serial tax avoider" in the Los Angeles court last year (06).
Isley is scheduled to begin his sentence next month (07Aug07), but his fans and record label Def Jam have started lobbying Bush to pardon the singer, urging people to contact the White House.
Isley is currently battling cancer of the kidney and recently recovered from a stroke.
The petition reads, "In lieu of the recent charges brought against Mr. Isley, he is currently in the process of a total restitution of his financial obligations to the IRS. Mr. Isley has also offered to perform for troops at various military bases to help heal the country and show his support for their tireless efforts to protect this country. It is important to point out that Ronald Isley has no prior criminal record, and has been a law-abiding, taxpaying employer since 1956."