U.S. Appellate Court Affirms U.S. Conviction of Violating Canadian Excise Tax Law

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Wednesday, October 1, 2003
Author: 
Bruce Zagaris
Volume: 
19
Issue: 
10
401
Abstract: 
On July 18, 2003, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit affirmed the conviction of David and Carl Pasquantino and one associate for using interstate wires in a scheme to defraud Canada of revenues related to taxation on the importation and the sale of liquors. The defendants ordered large quantities of alcohol from discount stores in Maryland, a portion of which would be smuggled into Canada and sold. The controversy among judges was whether prosecution of the defendants could be enacted in observance of the revenue laws of a foreign sovereign. The majority ruled that the defendants could be prosecuted under U.S. wire and mail fraud statutes when the victim of the scheme is a foreign sovereign as long as the prosecution does nothing civilly or criminally to enforce any tax judgments or claims.