Reginald Mercer, 64, faces 35 charges under the Income Tax Act and Excise Tax Act — 16 counts of willfully evading payment or remittance of tax or net tax, 10 counts of unlawfully obtaining a tax rebate or refund, four counts of making a false statement on a tax return, four counts of making a false statement in a return, application or certificate, and one count of evading payment of taxes.
On Wednesday, defence lawyer Leah Gruchy — appearing by phone on behalf of Mercer's lawyer Stephen Orr — said Mercer was prepared to enter a guilty plea at his next court date. The matter is set for speedy disposition Sept. 6 at 1:30 p.m.
The charges, covering a four-year period from 2010 to 2013, allege Mercer failed to claim over $600,000 of income, thus owing $108,000. He's accused of understating GST returns for the same time period in relation to the business Mercer Transportation by almost $110,000. Through Mercer Transportation, he's also accused of willfully obtaining or attempting to obtain GST refunds totaling $42,904.
The charges, which haven't been proven in court, were laid Jan. 18, 2017.