Property seized as proceeds of crime in tax evasion case
November 22, 2018 Ottawa, Ontario Canada Revenue Agency
The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) announced today that six rental properties and an automobile belonging to two Ottawa residents recently charged with tax evasion were seized and/or restrained using the proceeds of crime provisions of the Criminal Code. This marks the first time the proceeds of crime provisions have been used in a tax evasion investigation.
On October 23, 2018, Chi Van Ho (Ho) and Thanh Ha Thi Nguyen (Nguyen) were charged with tax evasion under the Income Tax Act. Ho and Nguyen are alleged to have underreported their income totaling $3,114,100 from January 2008 to December 2013, thereby evading $523,532 in federal income tax. Both Ho and Nguyen were arrested and then released with court imposed conditions.
Ho and Nguyen are the listed shareholders, directors and/or corporate officers in multiple corporations in the business of residential and commercial real estate rentals and property renovation and development.
The criminal charges against Ho and Nguyen allege that, from 2008 to 2013, multiple schemes were utilized to under-report their taxable income. The schemes included appropriating funds from multiple corporations under their control for personal purposes, appropriating corporate rental income and manipulation of supplier invoices.
All case-specific information above was obtained from the court filed records.
The CRA would like to acknowledge the significant collaboration and contribution of the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC) and the Seized Property Management Directorate (SPMD) of Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) to this investigation.
This case is another of the more serious and complex investigations the CRA is taking on. Those who do not fully comply with tax laws place an unfair burden on law-abiding taxpayers and businesses and jeopardize the integrity of Canada's tax base. While investigations take time, the CRA is committed to acting on all serious non-compliance. For the five-year period of April 1, 2013 to March 31, 2018, the courts have convicted 307 taxpayers. This involved $134 million in federal tax evaded and court sentences totaling approximately $37 million in court fines and 245.75 years in jail.
If you have made an omission in your dealings with the CRA, made a tax mistake or left out details about income on your tax return, the Agency may give you a second chance to correct your tax affairs and avoid criminal prosecution. The Voluntary Disclosures Program (VDP) may give you the opportunity to come forward, make things right, and have peace of mind. Disclosures that are made before the CRA launches an enforcement action such as an audit or criminal investigation may only result in you having to pay taxes owed plus interest. More information on the VDP can be found on the CRA's website at Canada.ca/taxes-voluntary-disclosures.
The CRA has set up a free subscription service to help Canadians stay current on the CRA's enforcement efforts.
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