Categorized | Regional

Turks and Caicos Islands Government sues Billionaire owner of luxury island Emerald Cay

By Hayden Boyce

SUN Publisher & Editor-in-Chief

The Government of the Turks and Caicos Islands, through the Civil Recovery Unit, has brought a million-dollar law suit against billionaire Tim Blixseth, one of the richest men in America, for underpayment of stamp duty in relation to Emerald Cay, a private luxury island off Chalk Sound and Silly Creek in Providenciales.

In a writ filed in the Supreme Court on December 3rd 2010, the Turks & Caicos Islands Government is seeking a declaration that adequate stamp duty was not paid, and that Blixeth, Emerald Cay Limited, Worldwide Commercial Properties Limited and Andrew Hawes are liable for the outstanding stamp duty of $1.7million as well as a penalty of $7million under section 8(c) of the Stamp Duty Ordinance, as well as damages, interest and costs.

Government’s claim against the above-mentioned individuals and companies alleges that by a series of agreements of no or little practical or commercial value, they concealed the true value of the consideration paid for the land in August 2006, leading to an underpayment of stamp duty owed under the Stamp Duty Ordinance.

The Government alleges that the true consideration paid was $28 million whilst it was recorded on the Land Transfer Certificate as just $10 million, and that the defendants conspired together to enter into a scheme to avoid payment of stamp duty of $2.7million properly due, but instead they paid just $975,000.

Emerald Cay was for sale last year at $75 million, but the price has since dropped to $48million.

The luxury island is accessed via a remote-controlled swing bridge and a Turkish marble driveway. It encompasses approximately 30,000 square feet of interiors all wired for everything through a Crestron system. A three-story great room has 45-foot-high cypress ceilings and there is also a three-story library, a master bedroom pavilion and an award-winning home theatre.

The estate includes three guest suites, a 6,000-bottle wine cellar, two adjoining swimming pools with a waterfall, a barbecue pavilion, tennis and volleyball courts, two boat slips, a boat house, a guest house, a caretaker’s home, and two private beaches.

Blixseth, a regular visitor to the Turks and Caicos Islands, has been making international headlines over the past few years after his famous Yellowstone Club went bankrupt.

According to Forbes, Blixseth, founder of Yellowstone Club of Montana, ranks as the 897th richest people in the United States with a net worth of $1.3 billion.

The Oregon-born Blixseth grew up poverty-stricken and eventually made millions early in his twenties by buying and selling lumber and timberland at high profits. When lumber moguls intentionally took hits on his sales causing him to lose all his money, he went out to re-develop his fortune through strategic real estate investments in the state of Montana.

Apart from owning the Yellowstone Club resorts and golf courses, this billionaire also has worldwide properties, including castles in Europe.

Recent news reports said Tim and his ex-wife Edra Blixseth owe the state of Montana $57 million in taxes on the money they drained from the Yellowstone Club and spent on luxury jets, cars and yachts that they wrote off as business expenses.

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

By Hayden Boyce

SUN Publisher & Editor-in-Chief

The Government of the Turks and Caicos Islands, through the Civil Recovery Unit, has brought a million-dollar law suit against billionaire Tim Blixseth, one of the richest men in America, for underpayment of stamp duty in relation to Emerald Cay, a private luxury island off Chalk Sound and Silly Creek in Providenciales.

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In a writ filed in the Supreme Court on December 3rd 2010, the Turks & Caicos Islands Government is seeking a declaration that adequate stamp duty was not paid, and that Blixeth, Emerald Cay Limited, Worldwide Commercial Properties Limited and Andrew Hawes are liable for the outstanding stamp duty of $1.7million as well as a penalty of $7million under section 8(c) of the Stamp Duty Ordinance, as well as damages, interest and costs.

Government’s claim against the above-mentioned individuals and companies alleges that by a series of agreements of no or little practical or commercial value, they concealed the true value of the consideration paid for the land in August 2006, leading to an underpayment of stamp duty owed under the Stamp Duty Ordinance.

The Government alleges that the true consideration paid was $28 million whilst it was recorded on the Land Transfer Certificate as just $10 million, and that the defendants conspired together to enter into a scheme to avoid payment of stamp duty of $2.7million properly due, but instead they paid just $975,000.

Emerald Cay was for sale last year at $75 million, but the price has since dropped to $48million.

The luxury island is accessed via a remote-controlled swing bridge and a Turkish marble driveway. It encompasses approximately 30,000 square feet of interiors all wired for everything through a Crestron system. A three-story great room has 45-foot-high cypress ceilings and there is also a three-story library, a master bedroom pavilion and an award-winning home theatre.

The estate includes three guest suites, a 6,000-bottle wine cellar, two adjoining swimming pools with a waterfall, a barbecue pavilion, tennis and volleyball courts, two boat slips, a boat house, a guest house, a caretaker’s home, and two private beaches.

Blixseth, a regular visitor to the Turks and Caicos Islands, has been making international headlines over the past few years after his famous Yellowstone Club went bankrupt.

According to Forbes, Blixseth, founder of Yellowstone Club of Montana, ranks as the 897th richest people in the United States with a net worth of $1.3 billion.

The Oregon-born Blixseth grew up poverty-stricken and eventually made millions early in his twenties by buying and selling lumber and timberland at high profits. When lumber moguls intentionally took hits on his sales causing him to lose all his money, he went out to re-develop his fortune through strategic real estate investments in the state of Montana.

Apart from owning the Yellowstone Club resorts and golf courses, this billionaire also has worldwide properties, including castles in Europe.

Recent news reports said Tim and his ex-wife Edra Blixseth owe the state of Montana $57 million in taxes on the money they drained from the Yellowstone Club and spent on luxury jets, cars and yachts that they wrote off as business expenses.