THE Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) on Thursday announced that Ajay Sharma of Brampton was sentenced in the Ontario Court of Justice in Brampton on April 27 to a conditional sentence of two years less a day, three years of probation, and a court imposed fine of $96,946.
Sharma pleaded guilty on September 25, 2017, to one count of fraud over $5,000 under the Criminal Code.
A CRA investigation revealed that Sharma, as owner and operator of a tax preparation business, S & S Associates, prepared 100 fraudulent individual tax returns for 37 clients for the years 2009 to 2012. In the preparation of his clients’ tax returns, Sharma created fictitious business losses totalling $2,577,221, resulting in the evasion or attempted evasion of a total of $488,178 in federal taxes. Sharma personally benefited $96,946 from this scheme by charging his clients a percentage of the unwarranted refunds they obtained from the CRA.
To maintain Canadians’ confidence in the fairness of our tax system, the CRA says it is determined to hold tax evaders, and those that facilitate tax evasion, accountable for their actions. Between April 1, 2006, and March 31, 2017, the courts convicted 55 tax preparers for tax evasion related to their tax affairs or those of their clients. The courts sentenced the tax preparers to over $4.6 million in fines and 703 months of jail time.
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.