Canada Revenue Agency - Toronto Tax Services Office

Canada Revenue Agency - Toronto Tax Services Office

March 11, 2005 16:11 ET

Canada Revenue Agency: Jail Time and Fine for Toronto Jeweller



MARCH 11, 2005 - 16:11 ET

Canada Revenue Agency: Jail Time and Fine for Toronto

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - March 11, 2005) - The Canada Revenue
Agency (CRA) announced today that on March 2, 2005 a Toronto jeweller
received a four-month jail sentence and was fined a total of $54,425 in
the Ontario Court Justice, after pleading guilty to two counts of filing
fraudulent GST returns.

A CRA investigation revealed that Mr. Avram Sufrin used a third party to
register a business name, J.F.M. Gems Trading (JFM), and obtain a GST
number that Mr. Sufrin subsequently used to attempt to obtain
unwarranted GST refunds. In particular, Mr. Sufrin rented space to
create the appearance of a retail jewellery store. Furthermore, he
fabricated supplier invoices from Canadian vendors and purchase orders
from offshore customers to carry out his GST fraud scheme. In fact,
there was no legitimate commercial operation engaged in the retail
jewellery business. When a CRA auditor went to the premises to conduct
an audit Mr. Sufrin introduced himself as "Manny Garcia", the
representative of the business owner.

Through this scheme Mr. Sufrin attempted to obtain GST refunds of
$54,425. The refunds were based on $777,500 in claimed expenditures by
JFM for a two-month period. The fine represents 100% of the goods and
services tax (GST) refund he sought to claim.

When individuals or corporations are convicted of tax evasion, they have
to pay the full amount of tax owing, plus interest, and any penalties
the CRA assesses. In addition, the court may, on summary conviction,
fine them up to 200% of the tax evaded and sentence them to a two-year
jail term.

Individuals or corporations who have not filed tax returns for previous
years, not reported all their income, or claimed fraudulent refunds, can
voluntarily correct their tax affairs. They will not be penalized or
prosecuted if they make a full disclosure before the CRA starts any
action or investigation against them. These corporations and individuals
will only have to pay the taxes owing, plus interest. To take advantage
of the voluntary disclosure policy, clients served by the Toronto Centre
Tax Services Office can call (416) 954-5779 or visit the CRA website at for more information.


Contact Information

    Canada Revenue Agency
    Sam Papadopoulos
    Communications Manager
    (905) 615-2117