Ex-Dunedin barrister struck off over tax evasion

In court, Raelene Marie Kelly was convicted of 46 charges, including aiding and encouraging her law firm to also evade tax. Photo / File
In court, Raelene Marie Kelly was convicted of 46 charges, including aiding and encouraging her law firm to also evade tax. Photo / File

A former Dunedin barrister who fled to Australia has been struck off for tax evasion for over $180,000.

In court, Raelene Marie Kelly was convicted of 46 charges, including aiding and encouraging her law firm to also evade tax.

She was struck off by the New Zealand Lawyers and Conveyancers Disciplinary Tribunal.

Kelly didn't appear in court or the hearing.

Thirty-one charges related to her knowingly applying PAYE deductions to a purpose other than payment to the Commissioner of Inland Revenue.

Fifteen charges also included her knowingly failing to provide a GST return to Inland Revenue.

The unpaid PAYE and associated deductions totalled $60,993 and the GST owing was $122,633.

The total unpaid tax liability was $183,626.

The New Zealand Law Society National prosecutions manager Mark Treleaven said rather than paying $60,993 to the Commissioner, she used the money for personal expenses such as mortgage payments, overseas travel, alcohol, private school fees and a monthly payment for a Jaguar car.

The Disciplinary Tribunal struck Ms Kelly off the roll and ordered her to pay the New Zealand Law Society costs of $12,683 and to reimburse the costs of the hearing.

- NZ Herald

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