Two Brunswick men charged with a conspiracy to defraud the Internal Revenue Service both pleaded not guilty in U.S. District Court in Portland Friday and were released on bond until their October trial dates.

David E. Robinson, 75, and F. William Messier, 70, both declined to comment Friday on the advice of court-appointed attorneys assigned to them on Friday.

The two men have previously said they do not recognize the federal court system and do not recognize the authority of the Internal Revenue Service. Messier and Robinson are the authors of the book, “Maine Lawsuit Against The IRS: For Unfair Trade Practices,” published in 2012.

Messier pleaded not guilty to seven charges – one count of corruptly endeavoring to obstruct administration of the tax law, one count of conspiracy and five counts of willful failure to file federal income tax returns. He was allowed to remain free on an unsecured $100,000 bond and was also assigned an Oct. 7 trial date.

Among the conditions of his bond, Messier agree to not travel outside the state or have any contact with several people associated with the case.

Robinson pleaded not guilty to a single count of conspiracy and was allowed to remain free on an unsecured $10,000 bond. He was also assigned an Oct. 7 trial date.

Messier is accused of failing to file federal income tax returns since 1997. In 2012, the IRS began a collection action against him for back taxes, interest and penalties for the years of 2000 to 2004 totaling $172,000. From 2006 to 2012, Messier received a total gross income that totaled about $677,000, according to an indictment.

Messier earned more than half of that income from 2006 to 2012 from renting antennae space on radio communication towers that he owned on his Tower Lane property and by renting access to his property to customers who built their own communications towers or located electronic equipment on the property, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Robinson allegedly claimed to be the “Interim Attorney General of the “Maine Republic Free State,” and urged people not to pay their state and federal taxes, according to an indictment.

Magistrate Judge John Rich III made a point of asking both men to verify their signatures on a document detailing their finances that allowed them to have court-appointed attorneys. Rich also told them that the court could review their finances and ask them to reimburse the attorney fees if they were found to have sufficient income.

If convicted, Messier faces up to 13 years in federal prison and fines totaling $1 million.

Robinson faces up to five years in federal prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

Staff Writer Noel K. Gallagher can be contacted at 791-6387 or at:

[email protected]

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