|Tony Accurso. (QMI Agency file photo)
MONTREAL - The troubles for Canadian construction tycoon Tony Accurso continue to add up.
He's already pleaded guilty federal tax fraud involving more than $4 million, and was arrested by the RCMP and the Quebec provincial police this year for alleged fraud, conspiracy and other corruption-related charges. Former excavation contractor Lino Zambito told Quebec's construction inquiry that former Mafia don Vito Rizzuto once mediated a dispute between him and Accurso.
Now it looks as though Quebec's revenue agency will take its turn going after Accurso.
QMI Agency obtained documents relating to 11 Revenue Quebec search warrants from October for companies owned by Accurso. The documents suggest Accurso made millions in questionable spending between 2003 and 2010, falsely labelling the purchases as tax-deductible business expenses.
The documents detail hundreds of thousands of dollars spent on high-end clothing, hotel stays and other luxuries.
Revenue Quebec also details how Accurso allegedly spent millions on his yacht and hundreds of thousands renovating the residences belonging to himself and his relatives. All of these purchases are alleged to have been declared as business expenses.
While Revenue Quebec has not charged Accurso with anything, the agency's spokesman told QMI Agency that the investigation is ongoing and charges could come shortly.
Revenue Quebec spokesman Stephane Dion said that the agency has collected nine times more suspect invoices than its federal counterparts.
Dion wouldn't confirm that the widened mandate of Quebec's raids meant that the province could potentially collect millions more than the feds did.
"I'll let you make your own conclusions," Dion said.
Accurso told a Montreal news organization on Wednesday that Revenue Quebec was being "abusive" and he was "looking to quickly resolve this (tax) issue and turn the page."