Russell Anthony Porisky was convicted for a second time in connection with a major income tax evasion scheme, and sentenced to four years in jail and fined $260,000. The BC Court of Appeal dismissed his appeal on April 30. (YouTube)

B.C. man who taught others to evade millions in taxes loses appeal

Russell Porisky of Chilliwack counselled hundreds to dodge a total of $11.5 million in income tax

The B.C. Court of Appeal has dismissed the conviction appeal of a notorious tax cheat who taught a nonsensical scheme encouraging hundreds of people to evade millions of dollars in taxes.

Russell Porisky’s appeal was rejected at a hearing in Vancouver on April 30.

In 2016, the Chilliwack man was sentenced to four years behind bars and handed fines of just under $260,000 for teaching the debunked “natural person” theory. His partner, Elaine Gould, was sentenced to one day in jail and fined $38,242.

When he was first convicted in 2012, court heard Porisky and Gould’s fraudulent counselling to more than 800 students resulted in an estimated $11 million in income tax evasion.

The “natural person” argument behind Porisky’s scheme has been rejected repeatedly by the courts. The idea taught is that income tax is optional as part of a contract with the government.

In YouTube videos still posted online, he claims “income tax is nothing more than an internal federal excise tax which is only mandatory for those who choose to work as a legal representative, under an implied contract of service, for the benefit of a federally created legal (artificial) person known as a ‘taxpayer.’”

His problem, along with that of his acolytes, is that he is simply wrong.

One of those followers, a woman integral to Porisky’s school, Debbie Anderson, was sentenced to four and a half years in prison and fined $35,000 in 2018.

• READ MORE: Chilliwack woman convicted of counselling tax evasion sentenced to 4.5 years jail

Anderson has denied guilt and never admitted the harm she caused by not paying taxes, claiming the whole case against her was a fraud.

She is now wanted by authorities, as she filed to appeal her conviction but did not show up for a hearing on April 17.

Her conviction stands and a warrant was issued for her arrest.

• READ MORE: Warrant issued for infamous Chilliwack tax cheat ‘educator’

As for Porisky, he and Gould’s case has gone on for many years. They had appealed their 2012 conviction, arguing the trial judge erred in his handling of a decision by them to re-elect to be tried by judge alone. In April 2014, the B.C. Court of Appeal quashed the convictions and ordered a new trial. That is the trial that ended in the conviction by a B.C. Supreme Court jury in 2016.

Porisky was found to have failed to pay $274,000 in income taxes and GST, while Gould was $27,000 in arrears.


@PeeJayAitch
paul.henderson@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

UPDATED: Heavy police presence in Victoria had part of Bay Street blocked off

Bay Street east of Quadra Street was blocked off on Saturday

Hundreds of foreign species still washing up on B.C. coast, eight years after tsunami

The Royal BC Museum is home to thousands of samples collected along the west coast of North America

Victoria first Canadian city to join United Nations tree planting challenge

The City of Victoria pledges to plant 5,000 trees by the end of 2020

VIDEO: Grizzly bears fight along northern B.C. highway in rare footage

Cari McGillivray posted the head-turning video, shot near Stewart, B.C., to social media

Handgun crackdown, health spending and transit plans latest campaign promises

Friday was the end of a busy week on the campaign trail

B.C. woman photographs massive ant swarm on Abbotsford driveway

She asked what the ants were doing? The answer: war

Police arrest B.C. phone scammer linked to illegal call centres in India

Person arrested in Burnaby here on a work visa, says police

Air Canada forced girl, 12, to remove hijab: civil rights group

The San Francisco Bay Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations calling for change

Man from Winnipeg who was hiking alone found dead in Banff National Park

RCMP say the man was hiking alone on Mount Temple Thursday

Resident finds loaded shotgun inside a duffle bag in Kelowna alleyway

RCMP seized a loaded 12-gauge shotgun, ammunition, clothing and other items

Graffiti, calls and Snapchat: RCMP probe string of threats targeting Kamloops schools

There have been nine different threats made to four different schools in the city

B.C. truck drivers to face higher fines for not using winter tire chains

As of Oct. 1, not using chains on the highway when required could net you a $598 ticket

Most Read