In 2010, Donna Marie Stancer and Deanna Lynn Lavalley started a tax consultation company by the name of DeMara Consulting Inc. It wasn’t until March of 2012 that the Canada Revenue Agency (the “CRA”) raided the DeMara Consulting Inc. office in downtown Vernon looking for evidence of tax evasion.
Stancer and Lavalley had been marketing themselves by stating that they knew of a loophole that would result in the taxman taking less of their money and called this “The Remedy.” The two women proceeded to illegally file tax returns using this method on behalf of 224 clients resulting in some of those clients suffering quite extensively in tax return interest penalties, and, in some cases, even facing gross negligence penalties.
The two women from Okanagan were on trial for defrauding the Canadian Government of roughly $195 million in false expenses for themselves and 224 clients. On July 3, 2015 the three-week trial came to an end with the jury finding the two women guilty on all counts. The tax return claims had resulted in $9.9 million worth of refunds; however, the CRA has only paid out approximately $50,000.
The sentencing will be determined at a later date.