The CRA’s international collaboration to combat tax evasion – Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement

Tax crime is a global problem that needs a global solution. The Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement, known as the J5, is a powerful operational alliance that leads the fight against international tax crime and those who facilitate it.

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Who are the J5?

The J5 was formed in June 2018 following a call to action from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development for countries to more effectively tackle the enablers of tax evasion. The J5 consists of five countries who face common threats to their tax administrations. They are:

  • the Australian Taxation Office
  • the Canada Revenue Agency
  • the Fiscale Inlichtingen- en Opsporingsdienst from the Netherlands
  • Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs from the United Kingdom, and
  • the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation from the United States

The J5 mission

All J5 countries face similar threats – organized crime groups and wealthy offshore tax evaders who are all well-resourced and have access to professional enablers to hide income and assets using the global financial system. To that end, we have a shared goal to target facilitators and enablers as well as build capability around data platforms that helps the work of each country.

By working together, we enhance our individual capabilities to put pressure on the global criminal community in ways we could not achieve on our own. It means that we are better equipped than ever to conduct operations and tighten the net on those who break tax laws, ensuring they face the consequences of their actions.

Always on duty

The reality is, in a globally connected world, the J5 can’t afford to work in isolation while criminals and tax cheats manipulate the system and exploit vulnerabilities for their personal gain. This is why we share information in a number of ways, whether that’s a one-to-one information exchange or data shared with multiple countries.

Our staff are a dedicated workforce of people and they’re the industry experts at what they do. We have a team of experts on board including data scientists, analysts, criminal investigators, auditors and more, all working across different time zones.

Due to their complex nature, J5 cases can often be lengthy and time-consuming, but the J5 team is well equipped to detect even the most intricately planned tax evasion schemes. With a common focus on tackling tax crime together, we’re united in focusing on enablers and the damage they cause to domestic and international tax systems.

Tackling tax crime together

The vast majority of taxpayers do the right thing, but there are a small number who deliberately intend to exploit the system. This threat from organized crime groups and wealthy offshore tax evaders is shared by all five countries. We can’t afford to work in isolation while organized criminals and tax cheats manipulate the system and exploit vulnerabilities for their personal gain.

The J5 continues to prove itself with our ability to share information and use sophisticated technology and resources to detect tax evasion arrangements. We use our combined resources to identify, disrupt and deal with tax criminals and professional enablers suspected of facilitating significant tax fraud across international borders. We also work with reputable financial institutions to improve their risk management practices and their ability to detect and report illegal transactions.

By working together, the J5 can tackle additional threats previously thought to be outside individual domestic borders. We’re able to enhance our existing investigation and intelligence programs, identify significant targets for new investigations and improve the tactical intelligence we have on threats now and into the future.

Not only are we tackling tax crime together, we’re collectively raising awareness on an international scale. The J5’s reputation as an alliance working together to reduce international and transnational tax crime and ancillary offences is growing. Our efforts to date create uncertainty for those seeking to commit offshore tax crime.

J5 in action

Since the inception of the J5, events known as “Challenges” have been held that were aimed at developing operational collaboration. These events bring together leading data scientists, technology experts and investigators from all J5 countries in a coordinated push to track down those who make a living out of facilitating and enabling international tax crime. They also allow us to identify, develop, and test tools, platforms, techniques, and methods that contribute to the mission of the J5.

Resources

For more information on the J5, please visit:

You can also follow the J5 on LinkedIn at: Joint Chiefs of Global Tax Enforcement: Overview | LinkedIn

The CRA is proud to be part of the J5. We’re tackling tax crime together!

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