Beanie Babies, Four Seasons owner escapes jail time for tax evasion

Ty Warner, the billionaire creator of Beanie Babies plush toys and also the owner of the Four Seasons New York, won't serve prison time for hiding millions of dollars in secret Swiss bank accounts to evade taxes, CNN reports.

A judge sentenced Warner to two years' probation, ordering him to perform 500 hours of community service at three Chicago high schools and pay a $100,000 fine.

"Society will be best served to allow (Warner) to continue his good works," U.S. District Judge Charles Kocoras said at a sentencing hearing, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Chicago.

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Warner had pleaded guilty to tax evasion and already paid a $53 million civil penalty and about $27 million in back taxes, prosecutors said. When he pleaded guilty, Warner admitted that he had maintained Swiss bank accounts with an unreported gross income of more than $24 million.

The tax evasion charge carried a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine

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