Advice & Best PracticeComment

Biggest cases of fraud this year (so far)

5. Timothy Bash

Amount defrauded: Nearly £250,000

Timothy Bash was jailed for defrauding accountancy firm Lovewell Blake and its clients out of almost £250,000. Bash had been employed by the accountancy firm for nearly 30 years and was responsible for offering tax advice and completing tax returns for approximately 230 clients.

Bash, on visiting clients, used a variety of different methods to obtain fraudulent cheques which he then altered the wording on, to later pay them into his own account. Officers discovered the total amount Bash stole from Lovewell Blake and its clients was £247,584 between October 2010 and March 2017.

Sentence: Bash was sentenced to three years in prison at Norwich Crown Court on 4 July.

4. Nazrul Islam

Amount defrauded: £480,000

The owner of a Derbyshire restaurant was jailed for a £480,000 tax fraud that was discovered when investigators uncovered a hidden sales book dating back five years.

Nazrul Islam, 52, from Birmingham, hid sales in a bid to evade tax payments at his Repton-based restaurant, an investigation by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) revealed. HMRC officers discovered “meticulous records” of daily takings between 2012 and 2017 at his house, which did not match up with sales he submitted in his VAT returns.
Sentence: Islam was sentenced to three years in prison at Birmingham Crown Court on 23 May 2019.

3. Raymond Thomas

Amount defrauded: £1.6m

Raymond Thomas, a tax fraudster, was jailed for four years and eight months in November 2017, after a HMRC investigation found he had stolen £1.6m

He was sent to prison for knowingly producing false invoices to fraudulently reclaim VAT payments and money laundering, relating to false invoices to support fraudulent VAT refund claims between 2008 and 2013.

Thomas claimed to have run Cambridge Computer Graphics, which made made aviation radar systems, and he supplied to the US Department of Defence, and due to his work he had to destroy invoices, but checks revealed these were all forged.

He also claimed he was a spy to friends and family to explain his frequent trips abroad but in reality he and his wife Susan Weston took trips to their holiday homes in France, Germany and Greece, purchased with the laundered funds.

Sentence: In June he was ordered to pay £615,000 in restitution or face a further five years behind bars.

2. David Buckley

Amount defrauded: £2.3m

The director of a Basingstoke call centre business, David Buckley, 51, and his accountant, Mahmood Sadiq Poptani, 60, were jailed following a HMRC investigation into a £2.3m income tax, National Insurance and VAT fraud.

HMRC found that Buckley stole PAYE deductions from employees and VAT whilst he was the managing director of Compensation Professionals Network Ltd between 2008 and 2012.

Buckley hired Swansea-based accountant Poptani in 2011. Investigators found that instead of paying the taxes due, Buckley bought shares in other businesses and propped up his own “failing” company. Poptani played a crucial role in the illegal movement of money from Compensation Professionals Network Ltd and sent £453,000 overseas.

Sentence: Buckley and Poptani were sent to prison for a total of seven-and-half years at Winchester Crown Court on 25 July.

1. Andrew Munday

Amount defrauded: Over £3m

Accountant Andrew Munday, who had celebrity clients such as Rita Ora and Rugby World Cup winner Matt Dawson, was jailed after committing fraud of over £3m.

He was found guilty of fraud after he caused a loss of nearly £2.4m to Rita Ora’s company, during a fraud campaign lasting seven years. He also caused a loss of £1.08m at the rugby winner’s Decidedly Dawson firm after siphoning money from the company into his own account.

He used the money to finance a gambling addiction and live a “lavish lifestyle”, acquiring football memorabilia including signed Paul Gascoigne shirts and an exclusive membership to Tottenham.

Sentence: 

Munday was sentenced at Northampton Crown Court jailed for five years and eight months.

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