On Monday the 1st of August 2011, 16 construction industry bosses were summoned by Birmingham Magistrates Court to appear on charges from the Crown Prosecution Service and HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) of plotting to steal £6m from the construction industry through Tax Fraud.
Names of people accused include Neil Hughes from Bromsgrove and Simon Clifford Davies, from Redditch.
HMRC’s Assistant Director of Criminal Investigation, Adrian Farley, said:
“Sixteen people have been charged linked to what we believe is a fraud resulting in over £6 million being stolen from public funds.
“We are committed to bringing such cases to the courts and depriving those involved of the proceeds of their crime.”
In 2009 HMRC conducted a criminal investigation into a multi-million pound tax fraud scam allegedly operating across London, Manchester, Nottingham, Staffordshire and the West Midlands.
Over 40 search warrants were issued at both business and residential premises across all areas.
Three of the current defendants, all from Staffordshire – Richard Ruddock, aged 41, Gary and Helga Lowndes, aged 50 and 40 – were arrested in September 2009; As a result of dawn raids by HMRC criminal investigation officers.
During raids and arrests made in September 2009, HMRC criminal investigation officers obtained a total of £130,004 cash from the tax fraudsters in question.
Two sites in Manchester produced £38,444 whilst another nine sites in the West Midlands made up £91,600 of the money seized.
Class A drugs and dealer apparatuses plus paperwork, bank account details and computers, were also obtained by HMRC criminal investigation officers during raids in the West Midlands.
The construction industry bosses under HMRC tax investigation are accused of conspiring to cheat HMRC of Corporation tax, Income tax, National Insurance contributions, VAT and money laundering charges.
All 16 defendants are currently on bail until they are set to return to Birmingham Crown Court for judgement on September 5, 2011.
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