BC real estate lawyer sentenced for tax evasion

A Vancouver lawyer who provided real estate legal services has been given a 22-month conditional sentence for tax evasion.

Baldev Singh Ghag of Surrey, BC, was sentenced on January 10, 2019 to a 22-month conditional sentence, including 8 months of house arrest, and was also fined $418,865.66 after pleading guilty to one count of tax evasion under the Income Tax Act.

Following its investigation, the CRA found that Ghag has failed to report $1,284,254.81 of taxable income for the 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008 tax years.

Ghag was principal of two corporations, providing real estate legal services through Baldev S. Ghag Law Corporation and using Ferengi Trading Corporation to lend money for real estate transactions.

The CRA found that he was responsible for the books and records of both entities but had intentionally intermingled personal and business bank accounts with the result of significant funds ending up in his personal accounts which was not reported as taxable income.

From April 1, 2013, to March 31, 2018, the courts convicted 307 taxpayers for tax evasion of $134 million in federal tax. These convictions resulted in sentences totaling approximately $37 million in court fines and 2,949 months (246 years) in jail.

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