An Ontario man has been handed a fine of nearly $1 million and a prison sentence of more than seven years after he filed falsified tax returns for five straight years and netted millions in refunds he shouldn’t have received.
The Canada Revenue Agency issued a news release on Monday announcing that Roy Francis Smith, of Markham, Ont., had been sentenced to 92 months in prison and a fine of $935,506 after pleading guilty to a single count of fraud over $5,000.
The agency says that an investigation found that Smith filed fraudulent GST/HST returns from 2001 through 2005, which allowed him to net $9,836,052 in "unwarranted refunds."
According to the agency, Smith managed to obtain information about a company that had been acquired by his employer. Smith then presented himself as a person who was authorized to communicate with the agency on behalf of the company.
The agency says its investigation determined that Smith created a company with a similar name along with a bank account he used to receive and cash the GST/HST refunds.
The agency says that Smith used the refunds "to live a lavish lifestyle," which included renovating his Markham home and also buying property outside of the country.
Smith also failed to file T1 returns from 2002 to 2005, which meant that he did not report the income he had received through the fraudulent refunds. The agency says that by doing this Smith avoided paying $935,506 in federal income taxes.
In a statement, Darrell Mahoney, the agency’s assistant commissioner for the Ontario region, says his organization is "determined to hold tax evaders accountable for their actions."