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Nearly 1,000 tax fraud charges were stayed against Quebec construction mogul

Montreal (August 06, 2019) – A Quebec judge stayed charges against construction mogul Paolo Catania, his company ‘Construction Frank Catania and Associates’ and other individuals. In June 2013, they were accused of 989 cases of tax fraud on the basis allegations of false declarations and falsely obtained tax credits. Quebec’s Revenue Department claimed the defendants evaded $1.2 million in taxes and it sought fines from them totaling $25 million dollars, The Canadian press reports.

Quebec court Judge Magali Lepage determined on Thursday in a verbal decision that the charges against Catania and his company are being stayed. After examining each delay, she explained her ruling by the unreasonable length of trial delays.

The charges against the defendants were laid in 2013. In October 2018, the defense team requested the stay of proceedings. Immediately after making the request, it was revealed that the trial was supposed to be closed in May 2020.

Since 2016 trials in provincial courts are limited to 18 months from the laying of charges to the (anticipated) end of the trial. If a preliminary inquiry is held, the process can be extended up to 30 months. The Supreme Court’s Jordan ruling was made to constrain delays within the justice system.