Tax Evasion as a Business
Tax evasion has followed business models and is marketed and even franchised to the Canadian public at large, but founders of 2 different tax evasion systems have recently been jailed. Mr. Russell Porisky is the founder of Paradigm, a business which counseled people across Canada to commit fraud through tax evasion. In late July 2016 he was sentenced to five and a half years in jail, and a fine of $259,482 for counseling others to evade taxes and for income tax evasion. Paradigm essentially operated through a franchise or multi-level marketing organization model and sold products (books, DVDs, and CDs), organized and taught fee-based seminars which educated people on how to structure their affairs in a way to illegally avoid taxes, in other words to commit criminal tax evasion. Paradigm Education Group follows their teachings that "natural persons" do not have to pay income tax, a theory referred to as "nonsense" by the courts.
More than 30 individuals have been convicted of criminal tax evasion offences and received significant fines and jail sentences directly related to their participation with Paradigm. This includes a “franchisee” Donald Baudais who was sentenced in 2014 to pay fines equal to 100% of tax and GST evaded, and 6 months in jail, for promoting Paradigm, even though his spouse is suffering from the aftermath of brain cancer.
Another highly marketed tax evasion scheme is Fiscal Arbitrators and also operated as a franchise using DSC Lifestyles Services. The owner and operator of Fiscal Arbitrators, Lawrence Watts of Markham, Ontario was sentenced this past June to six years imprisonment plus a fine of $149,129. Fiscal Arbitrators had no bogus theories to rely on – they just sold bogus tax losses.
A detailed summary of most known de-taxer tax scams (tax evasion schemes that claim there is no obligation to file or pay taxes) was given in the 2012 family law judgment of Meads v Meads by Alberta Associate Chief Judge Rooke. He said that all de-taxer tax evasion schemes boil down to making a claim that an individual does not have to pay taxes because they are neither under the court’s nor government’s jurisdiction.