A businessman who committed VAT fraud to the tune of £800,000 has been sentenced to 42 months in prison. Mohammad Tanwir Khan from Heaton Moor in Stockport is currently on the run having been found guilty of VAT fraud in May. Khan was sentenced in his absence at Manchester Crown Court.
Earlier this month, Khan was named among Revenue and Customs ‘most wanted’ men as part of a national campaign.
Khan’s trading activities first came under suspicion in 2010 during a routine VAT inspection. HMRC officers noted that there were a number of discrepancies in VAT receipts. Mr Khan’s property was then searched by HMRC in May 2011, uncovering further evidence that hat he was vastly overstating the scale and cost of his company’s trading. Amongst the evidence, HMRC investigators found over 1,700 suspect documents on Khan’s computer.
During his trial, it was revealed that Khan carried out the scam for five years – between 2006 and 2011. During this time, Mr Khan is thought to have submitted more than 350 fake invoices from his mecahnical parts distribution company, Spearpoint, to Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for fictitious exports to Pakistan.
Sandra Smith, assistant director of criminal investigation at HMRC, commented on the case:
“HMRC officers identified suspicious trading by Khan’s company, Spearpoint Limited, when his paperwork did not match the true level of exports.”
“Tax fraud and attempts to launder the proceeds of crime are treated extremely seriously by HMRC, and we will relentlessly pursue any individuals or crime gangs believed to be involved.”
Mr Khan will now face a confiscation hearing under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA)in relation to the benefits from his criminal activity.
Frenkels Forensics is a forensic accountancy firm specialising in assisting with evidence in fraud cases. Our forensic accountants are often instructed by criminal defence solicitors as expert witnesses for defendants.
Our team of forensic accountants can also assist in advising on reports prepared by the CPS in relation to Proceeds of Crime. Our experts have prepared reports on behalf of defendants and in many cases, have been able to provide evidence to reduce the level of benefits.