No grounds for relieving appellants from consequences of choice

Federal appeal | Equity

ESTOPPEL

No grounds for relieving appellants from consequences of choice

Minister issued reassessments against appellants totalling $702,646 in net tax and penalties. Basis of reassessments was that appellant improperly claimed input tax credits for specified period. Appellants were convicted of fraud in criminal proceeding concerning claims for input tax credits. Input tax credits found to be fraudulently claimed fell within period covered by reassessments. Tax Court concluded issue estoppel applied to bar appellants from relitigating. Tax Court concluded it would not exercise discretion in favour of allowing appellants to relitigate. Appeal was dismissed. There were not grounds on which conclusions could be set aside. Tax Court’s refusal to relitigate was amply supported by considerations. Appellant chose during sentencing phase of criminal proceedings not to seriously contest quantum of tax said to have been evaded and appellants were represented by counsel then. There were no grounds for relieving appellants from consequences of choice. There was no ground to interfere with conclusion circumstances favouring relitigation did not outweigh important public policy issues.

Dundurn Street Loffts Inc. v. Canada (Oct. 18, 2011, F.C.A., Evans, Layden-Stevenson and Stratas JJ.A., File No. A-420-10) 208 A.C.W.S. (3d) 326 (10 pp

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