Baldwin 'to clear wreckage of past'

Last updated 12:37 01/04/2013
Stephen Baldwin
Getty Images
IN COURT: Actor Stephen Baldwin addresses the media after pleading guilty to a charge of repeated failure to file income taxes.

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Stephen Baldwin, the youngest of four brothers in show business, said Friday he's looking forward to ''clearing the wreckage of my past.'' 

Step one will be coming up with $300,000 for the tax man. 

Baldwin, 46, admitted in Rockland County Court that he failed to pay New York state income taxes for 2008, 2009 and 2010. 

Under a plea bargain, he gets to stay out of jail - so he can make some money - and can have his record wiped clean if he pays the taxes within a year. 

His total bill in taxes, interest and penalties is $400,000, but state Supreme Court Justice Charles Apotheker said $100,000 had already been paid. 

Baldwin, currently appearing on US TV screens in All-Star Celebrity Apprentice, said he never intended to avoid paying taxes and got in trouble by trusting others. 

''Unfortunately, I got some really bad suggestions and advice ... from lawyers and accountants,'' he said outside court. 

Baldwin said he believes he can meet the deadline, noting that his father was a schoolteacher who made $25,000 and raised six kids. 

''I just look forward to getting the $300,000 paid in the next year,'' he said. 

He said he's directing a movie starring his brother William and that other ''faith-based opportunities'' consistent with his principles are emerging. 

His lawyer said earlier this month that Baldwin would not be taking any roles like his starring turn as a professional thief with a short temper in the 1995 film The Usual Suspects. 

If he doesn't pay all the money within a year, the plea bargain provides for a five-year sentence of probation and repayment within that time. 

Besides William, Baldwin's brothers Daniel and Alec - the former a star of TV's ''30 Rock'' - are also actors. Asked if he was getting any help from the family, Stephen Baldwin said: ''Just support as family support.... The responsibility lies ultimately with myself.'' 

No sentencing date was set. Another court appearance is planned in June to see how repayment is going.

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- AP

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