Quebec toying with taxing proceeds from crime

(Shutterstock)

(Shutterstock)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 7:15 PM ET

MONTREAL - The Quebec government has once again pursued a suspected drug dealer for unpaid taxes on the proceeds of crime.

A few days ago, Quebec's revenue agency seized $150,000 worth of property from a suspected marijuana trafficker. The agency claimed that Yannick Loyer "neglected" to pay tax on the money generated from his alleged marijuana deals.

Police raided his alleged grow-op last June and arrested 13 people. Loyer escaped, however, and is currently wanted by police.

A spokeswoman for Revenue Quebec told QMI Agency on Tuesday that there isn't a specific provision in Quebec's tax code that explicitly gives permission for the government to tax drug sales. However, the government's interpretation of the law does give it that right, said Andree-Anne Stewart.

"We think that people should pay according to their means," even if it comes from the proceeds of crime, she said.

Two weeks ago, a Court of Quebec judge approved of the government's interpretation and ruled that the province's revenue agency had the right to demand $1 million from a convicted cocaine trafficker.

Other provinces take a more traditional approach.

Ontario for instance, has the Civil Remedies Act, which permits the provincial government to seize and sell property acquired through the proceeds of crime. They money collected is given to those who suffered losses from said crime. B.C. has similar legislation.


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