First Tax Fraudster on Dragons’ Den?

Well, this is a case that shows why due diligence is extremely important. I just noticed that Vancouver Sun has reported in June 2007 “Promoter of SmartCD nailed for tax fraud, fined $75,000“. (or visit this June 20th, 2007 CanWest MediaWorks full link to read full article)

I remember when I spent 2+ hours to do my due diligence/research on SmartCD (see my season 1 episode 5 review), I wrote as bluntly as I could without getting myself in any potential legal trouble of saying the SmartCD technology is likely unworkable. Here is an excerpt from Vancouver Sun’s June 2007 report (or visit this June 20th, 2007 CanWest MediaWorks full link to read full article),

The [Canada Revenue] agency said that to generate refunds under the federal Scientific Research and Experimental Development program, Ross submitted $385,359 in expenses he claimed had been incurred by his company, Systemhac Corp., which is developing the SmartCD.

These expenses included payments to employees who never received the money, and photocopies of cheques and invoices that proved to be forgeries.

During a search of Ross’s home and the offices of his accountant, CRA investigators found a cheque that had been altered with correction tape. Photocopies of that cheque had been provided to CRA to support Ross’s tax credit claim. Had the claim been accepted, the company would have received a $134,876 tax credit to which it was not entitled.

On June 4, Ross pleaded guilty to one count of tax fraud in Robson Square Provincial Court. On Tuesday, he was fined $75,000 and given a 12-month conditional sentence.

Here is a YouTube clip of Arie Ross’ Dragons’ Den contest entry.

Here is Arie talking to Sean.


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