Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Convicted con-artist organising AFC fund raiser

CONVICTED Canadian-based Guyanese fraudster, Mr. David Singh is reported to be one of the main organizers of an upcoming fundraising event to be held in Toronto for the Alliance For Change (AFC) party.

Reliable sources in Canada yesterday indicated e that Singh has been circulating flyers and oganising the proposed fundraiser to be held shortly ahead of elections constitutionally due here before year-end.

According to an article in the Canadian daily, Toronto Star, Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has revoked the registration of two charities it says were operated for Singh’s private gain.

The move to shut down charities promoted as tax shelters comes more than three years after the Toronto Star reported on Singh’s involvement and his controversial donation-for-profit strategies.

Destiny Health & Wellness Foundation and Liberty Wellness Initiative of Markham, Canada issued a total of Cdn$131M in charitable tax receipts in 2005 and 2006, according to the CRA.
But only a small portion of that amount was collected from public donations, and much of that went towards paying sales agents and companies Singh headed or owned, the Toronto Star reported.
Singh had earlier come to prominence in Canada as founder of the former 700-agent mutual fund organization, Fortune Financial Corp. and Infinity Mutual Funds Management Inc.
He sold those companies in 2000 after being disciplined three times by the Ontario Securities Commission.
Now he operates pay-day-loan and money transfer companies, while working to raise funds for a medical school in St. Lucia.
“I made very little money (promoting the charities and tax shelters),” Singh insisted. “It was nothing but pain. Most of the money (40 per cent) went to pay agents’ fees,” the Toronto Star quoted him as saying.
But Cathy Hawara, director-general of the charities directorate in Canada, referred in a March 2010 letter to “collusive contractual arrangements with directors and related parties who are themselves promoting the tax shelter programmes.”
“These arrangements,” she is quoted as saying in the missive, “have resulted in substantially all of the actual cash received being diverted into the hands of the promoters and related companies rather than used for charitable purposes.”
Destiny “has been established and operated for the private gain of Mr. David Singh,” another official alleges in a letter to Singh.
Singh, the official is quoted as saying, “in his capacity as president of the tax shelter promoters, president of each participating charity, and shareholder of all four corporations involved in the tax shelter, as well as the involvement of his family members, puts himself in a position to direct the movement of funds received from participant donors between and into his corporate entities within and outside Canada.”
Destiny issued a tax receipt for $10,000 for each $2,500 a ‘donor’ would provide as a security deposit for a loan. It was claimed that the loan was to be paid from investment returns over 10 years. Sales commissions and other fees were deducted from the security deposit.
Law professor Daniel Sandler commented after quickly reading the Destiny material in late 2006 that the scheme should have raised red flags for donors.
“It becomes an interesting question how $2,500 invested in whatever form of investment . . . is going to generate sufficient returns,” Sandler said, adding that regardless, “you are definitely going to be reassessed; I say that with almost 100 per cent certainty.”
Singh said participants have indeed had their tax credits denied, but are challenging the denials. He would not name the lawyers hired to defend participants in the scheme.

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