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Ex-Bear Zorich guilty of tax evasion

March 14, 2013 at 2:35 PM

CHICAGO, March 14 (UPI) -- Former Chicago Bears defensive tackle Chris Zorich Thursday pleaded guilty to failing to file federal income tax returns for four years.

The former Notre Dame standout admitted he failed to file tax returns from 2006 through 2009 during a time when he had earnings of more than $1 million.

Zorich, 44, faces up to 16 months in federal prison, but his attorney said would request U.S. Magistrate Judge Daniel Martin order probation, the Chicago Tribune reported.

Federal prosecutors said Zorich, a lawyer, was paid $3,000 a month rent from the charitable foundation he founded, was paid by a law firm, received compensation for personal appearances and received deferred compensation from the Bears.

Zorich signed a consent decree with the Illinois attorney general's office last year to repay nearly $350,000 to the Chris Zorich Charitable Foundation he founded and he was barred from taking a leading role in any charity in the state.

Sentencing was set for July 12.

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