Celebrities have it all, don’t they? From loads of cash to… wait… actually, that’s pretty much the sweetest perk. Thus, there’s seemingly nothing famous people can’t buy their way out of. Well, except prison, of course. The following list of movie stars, musicians and athletes may truly have it all, but unfortunately that includes a rap sheet containing at least a one-year prison conviction.

Robert Downey Jr.
celebrities in jail, robert downey jr
With all of his recent success in the popular “Iron Man” and “Avengers” franchises, few people either know or remember that Tony Stark himself did hard time back in 1999 for wandering into a neighbor’s home and passing out while high, then missing his subsequent drug test while on probation. So just how hard of time are we talking? After initially being sentenced to three years, Downey wound up serving just one at the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison.

Wesley Snipes
celebrities in jail, wesley snipes
Remember how we said having boatloads of money when you are celebrity is a perk? It turns out that is only true when you pay the taxes on said millions. Along with fellow celebrities such as singer-songwriter Lauryn Hill and “Survivor” winner Richard Hatch, Wesley Snipes found this out the hard way in 2008 after being charged with failing to file income taxes on over $17 million from 1999-2001. He was sentenced to three years in a Pennsylvania federal prison in 2010. However, he was released after 28 months.

Tim Allen
celebrities in jail, tim allen
Most people will get out of jail early on good behavior. That’s one way to reduce your sentence. Tim Allen, on the other hand, had his own method. After getting busted in 1978 at Kalamazoo/Battle Creek International Airport with 1.4 pounds of cocaine, he simply gave up the names of several other drug dealers in order to get a potential life sentence for felony drug charges reduced. We’re not sure how he survived his two years and four months in Sandston Federal Correctional Institution in Minnesota after pulling a stunt like that, but we can’t imagine it was pleasant.

Danny Trejo
celebrities in jail, danny trejo
And you thought Danny Trejo was just a badass in his movies. It turns out that prior to going Hollywood, the 70-year-old Los Angeles native had spent a significant amount of his youth in and out of prison. The first on this list whose prison time is collective rather than a single incident, Trejo served a total of 11 years in Folsom, Soledad and San Quentin state prisons for various drug and robbery charges from 1961-1972. During this time, he became the boxing champion for his weight class at every facility he served time in. This would eventually lead into how he got his start in film, as he was hired to train actor Eric Roberts for “Runaway Train” in 1985. The small role he was given wound up being the fresh start he needed to turn it all around.

Mike Tyson
celebrities in jail, mike tyson
Speaking of boxers, Mike Tyson was famously sentenced to six years at the Indiana Youth Center in 1992 after allegedly raping former Miss Black Rhode Island Desiree Washington. He was, however, released after three years on good behavior. During his time in prison, the former heavyweight champion also converted to Islam, which likely played a major role in his early release. To this day, he still vehemently denies the charges brought against him.

Ja Rule
celebrities in jail, ja rule
If you’re going to commit multiple crimes, you might as well stack them in such a way that you can knock the sentences out all at once. That appears to be rapper Ja Rule’s credo, at least. After being sentenced to two years in prison in 2010 for possession of a loaded semi-automatic handgun from a 2007 incident, he began serving that time in June 2011 after turning himself in to the authorities. A month later, he was also convicted of evading his taxes from 2004-2006 on over $3 million worth of earnings. While this tacked on 28 months in the pen, he was allowed to serve both concurrently. He was officially released from jail on both charges in May 2013.

Tom Sizemore
celebrities in jail, tom sizemore
Another Hollywood tough guy with a rough patch, Tom Sizemore had already risen to stardom prior to running into trouble with the law — not to mention hard drugs. After being convicted of assault and battery of then girlfriend Heidi Fleiss in 2003, he was sentenced to six months at Peasant Valley State Prison. Sadly, after his initial release, a violation of his parole due to drugs landed him back in jail, this time getting slapped with a harsher 16-month sentence (lucky for him, the 213 days he’d already served counted towards this). Since then, he’s done his best to clean up his act, even releasing an autobiography on his troubled past back in 2013.

Phill Lewis
celebrities in jail, phill lewis
You’ll have to excuse the photo above, as it’s difficult to find any photos of actor Phill Lewis that aren’t hilarious. However, the circumstances of his arrest back in 1991 are anything but. After getting behind the wheel with a blood alcohol level of nearly three times the legal limit in the state of Maryland, Lewis collided head on with another vehicle, killing 21-year old Isabel Duarte in the process. He was convicted of manslaughter in 1993 and sentenced to five years in prison. Due to his work with a prison-based theater troupe prior to his sentencing, his time spent in jail was reduced significantly down to just one year. While this may seem unfair, he’s certainly not the first celebrity to kill someone and walk away with minimal consequences.

Shelley Malil
celebrities in jail, shelley malil
If the name Shelley Malil doesn’t ring any bells, that’s because he could barely be considered famous prior to his arrest in 2008 for stabbing ex-girlfriend Kendra Beebe 23 times. Probably known best for his role in the comedy “The 40-Year-Old Virgin,” the promising actor instead wound up convicted of attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon in September 2010. He was sentenced to life imprisonment in Ironwood State Prison with a possibility of parole in 14 years.

O.J. Simpson
celebrities in jail, oj simpson
You had to see this one coming. No matter what your thoughts are on the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman in 1994, that doesn’t change the fact that former athlete turned movie star O.J. Simpson simply couldn’t keep himself out of trouble after that. This is evidenced by his 2008 conviction for armed robbery and kidnapping after a failed attempt to steal back memorabilia he claimed to be his, resulting in 33 years at Lovelock Correctional Center with a possibility of parole in no less than 9. The biggest ironic twist of all: his sentencing came an unlucky 13 years to the day after his acquittal in 1995. And “The Juice” was potentially never on the loose again. The End.


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