A small contractor finally filed his taxes — 10 years late — but that won’t keep him out of jail.
Provincial court Judge Stephen Harrison sentenced John Clark to 60 days in jail, served on weekends, in addition to a $5,000 fine.
It’s the fourth time that Clark failed to file his taxes, contrary to a court order under the Income Tax Act. Canada Revenue Agency began demanding Clark file taxes in 2006, dating back several years.
Crown lawyer Anthony Varesi said he checked with Canada Revenue Agency Thursday. The agency confirmed Clark finally filed his returns from 2002 and 2003.
Clark has already paid about $8,000 in court-ordered fines for failure to file his tax returns. He’s a contractor who owns a backhoe and truck. He has no other criminal record.
The 67-year-old man told Harrison he works seven days a week, asking the judge to keep him out of jail and instead levy a conditional sentence.
But Harrison told Clark “the system would collapse around our ears” if all citizens treated the duty to file and court orders as he did.
“In my view a conditional sentence wouldn’t serve the principles of sentencing,” Harrison said.
Harrison did direct, however, the sentence can be served on weekends starting Nov. 1.