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.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The pros have a plan to play, what about minor hockey?

Plans are in the works, but the process is moving slowly

City of Terrace creates bylaw framework for ride-hailing

No ride-hailing announced yet for region, but may be coming soon

BC Hydro building extension almost complete

Extension will serve as a heated parking space for vehicles

COVID-19 highlights lack of connectivity in First Nations communities

Many don’t have access required to utilize online platforms, says First Nations Technology Council

Northern Women’s Recovery House Society calls for public engagement

Society aims to plans to bring the first women’s recovery house to northern B.C.

Mission prison COVID-19 outbreak ends, 9 new cases in B.C.

New positive test at Port Coquitlam care home

Facing changes together: your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Man who bound, murdered Vancouver Island teen still a risk to public: parole board

Kimberly Proctor’s killer is still ‘mismanaging emotions,’ has had ‘temper tantrums’

VIDEO: Humpback whales put on quite a show

The ‘playful’ pod lingered by a Campbell River tour operator’s boat for quite some time

Getting hitched at historic B.C. gold rush town still on table during COVID-19 pandemic

Micro-weddings, online visits, offered at Barkerville Historic Town and Park

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

Revelstoke woman finds welcoming letter on her Alberta-registered truck

There have been multiple reports online of vandalism to vehicles with Alberta licence plates

Spirit bear possibly spotted in West Kootenay

A local resident spotted the white-coloured bear while on an evening trail run near Castlegar on May 27

B.C. businesses ‘can’t shoulder burden’ of COVID-19 sick pay

Trudeau’s plan should be tied to federal emergency aid

Most Read