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  • Phoenix Taskforce outcomes

    Since the Phoenix Taskforce was established in 2014, the ATO and partner agencies have worked together to detect, reduce and deter illegal phoenix activity.

    From the establishment of the taskforce up until 31 December 2019 the ATO has raised more than $1.29 billion in liabilities from audits and reviews of illegal phoenix activities, and returned more than $560 million to the community.

    The Phoenix Taskforce now has 37 member agencies representing a broad range of interests, including:

    • law enforcement
    • corporate regulation
    • workplace rights and entitlements
    • the construction industry
    • labour hire licensing
    • consumer affairs.

    Achievements for 2018–19

    In 2018–19 the ATO completed more than 750 audits and reviews across a range of industries and locations. We collected more than $70 million in cash, contributing to government spending on essential services.

    The Phoenix Taskforce has recorded nine criminal convictions, and banned and disqualified 30 directors from being involved in the management of a corporation.

    We've also received more than 1,800 referrals of suspected illegal phoenix activity through the Tax Integrity Centre until 30 June 2019.

    Highlights

    • A company director was sentenced to more than five years jail for fraudulently obtaining more than $890,000 through illegal phoenix activity, and was ordered to repay the money.
    • A company director was sentenced to six years jail for GST fraud involving illegal phoenix activity in the property and construction industry. He was also ordered to pay reparations of more than $1.8 million.
    • A labour hire operator was convicted and sentenced to six months jail for fraud offences relating to illegal phoenix activity. The financial adviser who helped facilitate the scheme also received a criminal conviction and an 18-month good behaviour bond.
    • A former company director was convicted and fined $2,500 for dishonestly using his position to fraudulently remove company property after his business was placed in liquidation.
    • Two men received good behaviour bonds and were automatically disqualified from managing companies for five years following their conviction for engaging in illegal phoenix behaviour.
    • A company director was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment. He was released on a two-year $3,000 good behaviour bond, after pleading guilty to charges relating to illegal phoenix activity.
    • A former director was sentenced to a one-year, $500 good behaviour bond relating to illegal phoenix activity. She was also ordered to pay $22,000 in reparations.

    See also:

    Last modified: 13 Feb 2020QC 55340