A west-Midlands accountant was jailed yesterday for four years for
masterminding the theft of £2.6m in VAT.
Parmjit Singh Rana, 47, set up 19 fake travel businesses across the UK, which
were used by three accomplices to launder the profits of the fraud. He created a
bogus firm, Siverwood Accountants, which handled VAT returns for the travel
companies and validated them in order to secure repayments from
HMRC investigators found Rana instructed his co-defendants, who were
sentenced for a total 30 months, to set up bank accounts, which they used to
reclaim VAT on zero-rated travel services. They withdrew the repayments credited
by HMRC in cash.
Adrian Farley, assistant director of criminal investigation for HMRC, said:
“We are determined to take the strongest possible action against professionals
who direct organised criminal activity and will now work to reclaim the proceeds
of this crime.”
A confiscation order is being pursued and assets of £2.75m have been frozen.
Rana, who managed Rana Accountants and Anderson Accountants, was also
disqualified from being a company director for ten years.
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