Real Life Scott's Tots: A Billionaire Who Said He Would Pay Off Moorehouse Student Debts Has Admitted To Tax Fraud

(The Hill) -- Robert Smith, the billionaire who went viral last year for paying off the debt of students at Morehouse College, admitted to an illegal scheme to conceal income and evade taxes by using offshore trusts and bank accounts for 15 years. 

The Justice Department announced on Thursday that Smith entered a non-prosecution agreement, in which he admitted his involvement in the scheme and agreed to cooperate with the ongoing investigation. The billionaire will also pay back $139 million in taxes in penalties, and he agreed to abandon $182 million in charitable contribution deductions. 

“It is never too late to do the right thing,” U.S. Attorney David Anderson said in a statement. “It is never too late to tell the truth. Smith committed serious crimes, but he also agreed to cooperate. Smith’s agreement to cooperate has put him on a path away from indictment.”

Robert Smith thought that by the time he turned 57 he'd be a billionaire, but it turns out he has less money than he did at 50. Despite the fact he's made a lot of empty promises in his life, this is by far the most generous.

Some things never cease to amaze me. Scott's Tots, the CRINGIEST episode of television in history, an episode I have to turn off right after Stanley's laugh, has actually come to life. A businessman promised a group of smart, talented, young black kids that they'd graduate college debt free and now he might be able to get them some laptop batteries. Just when you think you've found something that is so absurd and outlandish that it could never happen in real life, reality steps up and says NOT SO FAST. Stunning. Stunning stuff.

And by the way, it's like 90/10 people who fins Scott's Tots unwatchable, right? I've had people tell me it's their favorite episode. That's INSANITY. The Office obviously worked in the awkward realm, but Tots was one of their only misses. It was too much. Watching the hearts of those kids break and Michael try to wiggle his way out of it had me hiding under the blanket and looking through my fingers like it was a snuff film. No normal person can actually enjoy that much awkwardness.

Note: I have no idea if this means he's not actually paying off the student debts. Since the penalty seems relatively small for a billionaire, I imagine he still is, but I never miss a chance for an Office reference.