Countless jauntily stacked boxes filled to the brim with paper, spreadsheets with thousands of rows of transaction data – when tax investigations begin it is easy to become engulfed in masses of information.
The task for both defendant and prosecutor in a tax fraud case is to distinguish what is relevant, what is useful and then to set about making sense of it. Furthermore, the findings must then be presented in a clear and coherent manner to show that an individual or business was – or was not, as the case may be – compliant with tax regulations.
Needless to say, this is not an enviable task. But it was one that forensic accounting firms, such as the specialists at Frenkels Forensics, are proficient in. It is best to illustrate with an example of how Frenkels Forensics have come to the rescue of defendants that stood accused of tax fraud.
The accused – a team of three – had all previously served time in jail before re-entering the outside world and discovering a way in which they could make money by helping clients get their hands on tax refunds they were entitled to. The trio set up a practice and became registered tax agents with HMRC – the money started to pour in.
However, with their sharp rise to success came suspicion and an investigation was launched into their 500 clients amid claims that they were claiming tax refunds based on false information supplied on Income Tax Returns. The amount thought to be claimed was £2 million.
In stepped Frenkels Forensics. The forensic accountants compiled over 50 lever-arch files worth of evidence that comprehensively proved to HMRC that the tax returns were not incorrect and, moreover, compared what the former prison inmates were doing with other similar practices to demonstrate its legitimacy.
It took back-breaking, tireless work to put forward such a robust defence of how they had made their money but the judge decisively remarked: “I find Mr Frenkel’s report particularly helpful.” All charges were subsequently dropped against the defendants.
For expert financial help for any tax issues contact Frenkels Forensics for an independent appraisal.
Alternatively, if you’re looking for advice in any aspect of forensic accountancy, then do get in touch via Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn or by visiting our website www.frenkels.com
By Vitek Frenkel – find me via Google+.