OnPoint by Keith Ng



Here are some things I know about gotcha.co.nz.

It's registered to one Cameron Slater, of GOTCHA Publishing Limited, which is based in 35 New Road, um... Belize City, Belize.

35 New Road, Belize City, Belize, is the office of Orion Corporate & Trust Services. They help people set up Belize International Business Companies (IBC).

Why would one choose a Belize IBC? Aside from not having to pay any taxes in Belize, they also guarantee the confidentiality of directors and shareholders in that company.

No information pertaining to the identity of directors & shareholders is filed in any public register in Belize. As a licensed registered agent, we ensure privacy for our law-abiding clients. The only thing that must be filed with our IBC Registry is the name of the Registered Agent and the Memorandum and Articles.”

(Registered Agent would be Orion themselves.)

Overseas companies trading in NZ have to be registered as a company in New Zealand, for disclosure and tax purposes. Cough cough.

The copyright notice on Gotcha.co.nz, as of Tuesday, read “Copyright © 2009 Gotcha Publishing Limited” (i.e. Gotcha operates a NZ site...). Gotcha has ads served by tpnads.com, which is registered to a NZ company (...which receives revenue from a NZ company).

Gotcha Publishing Limited is not on the companies register.

Cactus Kate is a lawyer. She had some really bad food in Belize on 27 July.

I was in email contact with her on Tuesday, asking her who the directors and shareholders of Gotcha were, and why it was registered in Belize. She was very angry.

Thursday. Cactus Kate is no longer a blogger on Gotcha, citing... well, I'm not entirely sure.

Gotcha's copyright notice now reads “Copyright © 2009 Gotcha!.”

Ya know, I didn't actually care about tax arrangements, professional consequences for break the law, income declaration to people who might be interested, or breaches of the Companies Act – I just wanted to know who was behind the site. Oh well.

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