Tax shelter operated by hidden LLC supported by banks and churches
October 02, 2008
Research has revealed Metafund, a nonprofit support community service chartered to help low income economic development projects, is operating an undisclosed entity MetaMarkets OK, LLC. Other evidence suggests MetaMarkets is the central element in a scheme that uses a series of LLCs to hide the identity of wealthy individuals and corporations that purportedly invest in MetaMarkets. It appears that once the money arrives, MetaMarket claims the money is a qualified investment to obtain tax credits worth up to 200% of the amounts purportedly invested. MetaMarkets then forwards the purported investment back to another LLC connected to the original investors. Wealthy individuals and corporation then use the tax credits to avoid paying state income taxes.
Oklahoma state officials deny access to the public information that would reveal these connections. We found the connections by examining documents Metafund's federal chartered bank partners are required to file with the US Comptroller of the Currency. Research also revealed that bank partners reported MetaMarkets OK, LLC as a Delaware registered entity. Oklahoma records reveal a MetaMarkets OK, LLC, as an Oklahoma entity registered by A. Thomas Loy, Chairman of MetaFund. Registering identical names in different states is a scheme often used to disguise money and identity tracing.
This scheme uses a tax credit investment incentive program that has been kept hidden from the public and allowed to operate without oversight or accountability for nearly 20 years. Certain entities like MetaMarkets have had complete autonomy to claim as many tax credits as their judgment allows. This resulted in increased disregarding qualifying criteria and hatching financial shell game schemes. Turning the program into a self serve vending machine with no rules and no limits. Leaving Oklahoma taxpayers to face $100's million in tax revenue shortfalls over the next few years while wealthy individuals and corporations avoid paying their shares.
Evidence suggests one obvious violation MetaMarkets didn't bothered to hide was claiming the more lucrative rural area tax credits for purported investments in metropolitan areas. We have located 8 LLCs operating as 4 matching pairs. One half of a matching pair invested money in MetaMarkets, which after claiming tax credits channeled the purported investment back into the other matching pair half.
A strange irony is that a nonprofit claiming to further economic development in low income areas appears to be operating secret schemes shifting the tax burden of wealthy individuals and corporations to those it claims to help. All this is done under the banner of endorsement by major banks, civic and church organizations, and state officials, all turning their heads to what is occurring. It makes one wonder if these non-watching dogs are personally benefiting.
Lists of names and details at MetaFund Investments.