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Community detention on tax charges

A Canterbury business consultant who failed to follow his own advice on paying PAYE to Inland Revenue has been sentenced to community detention on tax charges.

Michael Darren Coursey plead guilty to 17 charges of aiding and abetting Healthcare Horizons Ltd to deduct tax from worker’s wages but not pay it to IR. He was sentenced on 22 September.

Coursey was the director of Healthcare Horizons which operated an ambulance service in Canterbury. It was placed into liquidation in September 2019 owing $354,935.90 across multiple tax types and including penalties and interest.

Coursey is an experienced company director, who also ran a business advice consultancy and advised other companies to meet their PAYE obligations. But he didn’t follow his own advice.

Between December 2017 and July 2019, the company employed workers and deducted PAYE from their wages but didn’t pay all of it to IR. Total owed after Coursey made some late payments was $185,012.46.

According to the company’s bank accounts there was always enough money to pay all or part of the PAYE by the due dates but Coursey decided not to pay the money to Inland Revenue. He was sentenced to six months community detention.

Last updated: 31 Oct 2023
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