Las Vegas, Nev. - On a 106-degree May afternoon in 2003, government agents raided several establishments belonging to Southern Nevada businessman Robert “Bobby” Kahre. With guns drawn, officials held more than 20 handcuffed workers in the sun without water as agents collected records and other materials.
Kahre hadn’t committed a crime. He had upset the Internal Revenue Service by paying his workers based on the face value of gold and silver coins, versus the market value in the Federal Reserve system (the value of the coins in U.S. paper dollars). Even though the coins were in circulation, displayed a face value, and were regulated by Congress, the IRS’s confusing and endless tax code did not determine how to handle these gold and silver coins if used for payroll. The tax code only references dollars. It does not distinguish between coined money and paper money.
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Photo: Las Vegas attorney Joel Hanson, who served on the Kahre defense team.