Drug dealer gets tax break on lost money
<TABLE style="WIDTH: 405px; HEIGHT: 44px; : #ffffff" cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0>
<TD =caption style="WIDTH: 360px">
October 29 2004 at 04:21PM </TD></TR>
<TD style="HEIGHT: 1px; : #cccccc" colSpan=2></TD></TR></T></TABLE>
<TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=23>
Canberra - An Australian drug dealer who dug up hundreds of thousands of dollars from his backyard to buy heroin but had the money stolen in the deal can claim a tax deduction for his losses, an Australian court has ruled.
Under Australian law, income earned from illegal activity can be subjected to income tax. The High Court of Australia ruled this week that if illegal income is subjected to tax, then losses should be deductible.
The ruling ended a 10-year battle between convicted drug dealer Francesco Dominico La Rosa and the Australian Tax Office, which argued the tax deduction was against good public policy.
Drug dealer Francesco Dominico La Rosa buried more than A$220000 (about R1-million) in his backyard in 1995 and dug it up again to buy heroin, but had the cash stolen. La Rosa spent six years in jail for heroin import and possession.
The Australian government said on Friday it would close the tax loophole to stop other drug dealers claiming tax breaks.
"The court said that this drug dealer could claim as a deduction some money that was stolen from him. If that's the state of the law as interpreted by the high court, I don't think it's very good," Treasurer Peter Costello told local radio.
"I will seek to introduce legislation to change that law," he said.</TD></TR></T></TABLE>
Dear Drugs-Forum readers: We are a small non-profit that runs one of the most read drug information & addiction help websites in the world. We serve over 4 million readers per month, and have costs like all popular websites: servers, hosting, licenses and software. To protect our independence we do not run ads. We take no government funds. We run on donations which average $25. If everyone reading this would donate $5 then this fund raiser would be done in an hour. If Drugs-Forum is useful to you, take one minute to keep it online another year by donating whatever you can today. Donations are currently not sufficient to pay our bills and keep the site up. Your help is most welcome. Thank you.