Posted: Monday, October 28, 2019. 2:08 pm CST.
By Aaron Humes: Reynaldo Verde has pleaded not guilty to charges of extortion and attempted extortion in a Miami courtroom and is girding up for a lengthy legal battle.
He has also, according to Financial Secretary Joseph Waight, offered his resignation as Deputy Director of Tax Services to the Public Service Commission (PSC).
Waight emphasized to reporters that while Verde is on interdiction at present, he has not been charged with anything in Belize and the investigation ordered by the Belize Tax Service Department into his activities has yet to see any formal complaint made apart from the entity who complained against him in the United States.
“You can’t discipline or penalize a person if there’s no charge…it’s very hard to do an investigation if nobody comes forward and says ‘Mr. Verde did this and that and the other’, no complaint,” Waight said.
The owner of Orchid Bay in Corozal complained to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) that Verde attempted to get more than three hundred thousand dollars from him to wipe away taxes owed by Orchid Bay, but only got a thousand (U.S.) dollars. Verde was nabbed on his way back to Belize from official business in Brussels on September sixth.
But there is a sticking point on that as well: “They have now filed and we are going through the process; but the problem there – the company was not even registered for tax (purposes) so you can’t even go through a file to see what may be right or wrong with the file…they were transacting business in Belize, selling land or so; they should have been registered, but the law provides for late registration and you pay the penalties,” Waight revealed.
The PSC is to review the resignation.
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