Tax Tips

It fell off the back of a truck

In all civilized societies it is a crime to receive or deal in stolen property. That limits the ability of criminals to prosper from their criminal activities. As well the citizen is expected to ascertain the provenance of anything he is acquiring in case it might be stolen.

So what do you make of this. A guy shows up at the CRA's offices from the American tax collectors and says he has a list of names of Canadians who have bank accounts in Liechtenstein. Shouldn't the CRA agent ask where the US tax guy got it seeing as  it is a secret list? No, instead he accepts a vague explanation about the list having fallen of the back of a truck that was driving around Frankfurt, Germany on its way from Lichtenstein. The CRA guy never reads the newspaper and as a result is unaware  that former Prime Ministers are understating their income or bank customer lists are being stolen from a Liechtenstein bank and sold to the German tax authorities   for $6.3 million. The Germans are trying to lower their cost of the list by selling pieces of it to other government's tax authorities. Hey wait a minute this is stolen property. So the Canadian Government announces "Project Jade" where they are going after 106 Canadians with undeclared income in a Liechtenstein Bank. The information they got is obviously stolen. Do we see the flatfoots from Toronto's 51 Division breaking down the doors of One Front Street West, the CRA office, to nail the criminals in possession of stolen property? Nope.

Conclusion: it is perfectly legal for the Government of Canada to profit from the  use and possession of stolen property. If you are thinking of stealing your employers' customer list and starting off on your own, forget it. You'll end up in the slammer,  unless your boss is a foreign bank. On the other hand if you want to sell the loot from your last heist the safest place to do it is in the local CRA office.

Again the message is that if you are depending on secrecy for your tax planning - don’t. If the taxers can’t get your information by demand they’ll buy it., 1 416-955-9511

© Copyright 1998 - 2016 Alex Doulis. All rights reserved.



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