The Tax Investigation uncovered that Agwuegbo had failed to declare £167,000 of rental income she had received from five properties around South-East London and she had also fraudulently claimed £101,000 in tax credits.
Between 2003 and 2009 Agwuegbo falsely claimed £21,000 each year in tax credits by stating her income was between £8,000 and £9,000 per year. However, the HMRC tax investigation proved that her actual annual income was in excess of £50,000.
To top it off, she had also been running an illegal money lending business with former solicitor, Cosmas Anyakudo, committing money laundering offences totalling more than £800,000.
Anyakudo would arrange short-term loans for people, charging them high interest rates with Agweugbo providing the funds.
Agwuegbo used some of the proceeds of crimes to purchase the rental properties in South East London.
She rented these properties out and failed to declare the additional income.
It is believed the properties are worth approximately £1m.
Agwuegbo was sentenced to three years for tax credit fraud, 18 months for income tax evasion and 18 months for money laundering. All counts will run concurrently meaning a total jail term of three years.
Cosmas Anyakudo was sentenced to 12 months suspended for two years after pleading guilty to money laundering and tax fraud offences.
Upon sentencing, Her Honour Judge Wright said that Agwuegbo was ‘greedy and told lies over many years.’
Confiscation proceedings are now taking place in a bid to recover money stolen from the public purse.
Kevin Kinsella of KinsellaTax, said:
“The investigation probably began as a tax credit case and from there went into a fully blown investigation.
I try to tell people that the smallest enquiry can develop into a serious fully blown case with a prison sentence at the end of it.
The most intelligent people do not have a grasp on where a tax investigation is going.
Recently we were asked an opinion on a VATenquiry covering 2 years which developed into an enquiry for direct tax which, when the new accountant did the figures, it showed a £150,000 under-declaration each year for 2 years.
The client, a professional man, still thinks that HMRC will restrict their enquiry into 2 years only. Amazingly we have advised him that the enquiry will go back 20 years and he is still insisting it will only be 2 years. Needless to say we were unable to help him.”
The sooner you make a voluntary disclosure to HMRC, the more chance you have of avoiding that dreaded tax enquiry letter landing on your doorstep.
Avoid a stressful and lengthy interrogation by HMRC tax inspectors and get KinsellaTax to handle your voluntary disclosure for you.
To make a Voluntary Disclosure to HMRC today call KinsellaTax without delay on 0800 471 4546.