2012's biggest tax cheats named and shamed

lovemoney staff
by Lovemoney Staff lovemoney staff on 04 January 2013  |  Comments 21 comments

HMRC has released information, including photos, of the biggest tax evaders of last year, who are collectively serving over 150 years behind bars.

2012's biggest tax cheats named and shamed

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has published details and photos of the top 32 tax cheats of 2012.

They were sentenced to a combined total of 155 years and 10 months for crimes including tax evasion on imported cigarettes and alcohol, smuggling gold and garlic, and VAT fraud.

Photos of the criminals and information about the convictions have been published on photo-sharing website Flickr. You can view them here.

The photo above shows some of the members of a gang who attempted to smuggle 20 million cigarettes into the UK from Dubai by describing them in shipping documents as babies’ toys. The total duty they were attempting to evade is estimated at £3.3 million.

The Government has given HRMC £994 million to tackle tax evasion, with the aim of raising an additional £7 billion a year by 2014/15.

If you suspect customs or excise fraud or tax evasion, you can report it via the HMRC website.

More on tax

Should tax evaders be named and shamed?

Are 'cash in hand' payments morally wrong?

Calls to HMRC cost us £136 million!

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Comments (21)

  • MazDa
    Love rating 1
    MazDa said

    I think it is about time the government started to tackle the likes of the small tax fiddlers. This is from my personal experience.

    I put my house on the market in August and it was sold with one week. I was in total shock.

    The estate agents assured me that the buyer was genuine he had sold his house on the day he put in for mine and had a huge deposit. He apparently approached the Hailfax Building Society who offered him a mortgage in principle.

    The then went off to Kashmir for two weeks for a family wedding in September. I did not want the sale to go through until 03/12/12 because I had a fixed rate interest until the 30th of November and did not want to pay nearly £2.000 redemption fee. Eventually we got to to the point of exchange in contracts and nothing happened.

    I approach the agents who rang him and he assured everything was ok. He was going into see the Halifax the next day. Phone calls from the estate agents confirmed the person he wanted to see was not there so he put the meeting off until after Eid.

    Again nothing so in desperation I rang the buyer myself on his mobile phone (he is a Taxi driver) and had given me his business card.

    I said to him I understand you are having problems with the Halifax. ‘Oh yes he said’ ‘they want to know all my earnings. I am not doing that’ I am going in on Wednesday and my cousin is going to go on the mortgage with me.’

    This rang alarm bells so I emailed the estate agents (two branches one in the town centre and one local to me) giving my consent for my partner to speak with them.

    The following day my partner rang the local branch where he was assured the buyer would get a mortgage (the families often club together).

    I went the Estate agents in the town centre and told them what the buyer had said. So they rang him again and this time he said his cousin was not going with him and he was going to get a part time job and was going back into see the Haifax with his accountant. When I asked the estate agent what he meant by this she said sometimes they use unregistered accountants. At this point I had had enough and pulled out if the sale. It was obvious this man was earning the money but was not declaring it. Consequently he was unable to get a proper mortgage. There are several taxi drivers living in my street. No wonder they can afford to buy all the housing stock. The area is popular because the local high schools are single sex and these people prefer to keep their daughters away from the boys.

    No wonder young people can’t get onto the housing ladder! My son works with a Pakistani man. He has told my son that Pakistani people do not think they are breaking the law. They think it is a loophole in the law. I wonder how many of these people are also claiming benefits?

    Report on 04 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • MazDa
    Love rating 1
    MazDa said

    I think it is about time the government started to tackle the likes of the small tax fiddlers. This is from my personal experience.

    I put my house on the market in August and it was sold with one week. I was in total shock.

    The estate agents assured me that the buyer was genuine he had sold his house on the day he put in for mine and had a huge deposit. He apparently approached the Hailfax Building Society who offered him a mortgage in principle.

    The then went off to Kashmir for two weeks for a family wedding in September. I did not want the sale to go through until 03/12/12 because I had a fixed rate interest until the 30th of November and did not want to pay nearly £2.000 redemption fee. Eventually we got to to the point of exchange in contracts and nothing happened.

    I approach the agents who rang him and he assured everything was ok. He was going into see the Halifax the next day. Phone calls from the estate agents confirmed the person he wanted to see was not there so he put the meeting off until after Eid.

    Again nothing so in desperation I rang the buyer myself on his mobile phone (he is a Taxi driver) and had given me his business card.

    I said to him I understand you are having problems with the Halifax. ‘Oh yes he said’ ‘they want to know all my earnings. I am not doing that’ I am going in on Wednesday and my cousin is going to go on the mortgage with me.’

    This rang alarm bells so I emailed the estate agents (two branches one in the town centre and one local to me) giving my consent for my partner to speak with them.

    The following day my partner rang the local branch where he was assured the buyer would get a mortgage (the families often club together).

    I went the Estate agents in the town centre and told them what the buyer had said. So they rang him again and this time he said his cousin was not going with him and he was going to get a part time job and was going back into see the Haifax with his accountant. When I asked the estate agent what he meant by this she said sometimes they use unregistered accountants. At this point I had had enough and pulled out if the sale. It was obvious this man was earning the money but was not declaring it. Consequently he was unable to get a proper mortgage. There are several taxi drivers living in my street. No wonder they can afford to buy all the housing stock. The area is popular because the local high schools are single sex and these people prefer to keep their daughters away from the boys.

    No wonder young people can’t get onto the housing ladder! My son works with a Pakistani man. He has told my son that Pakistani people do not think they are breaking the law. They think it is a loophole in the law. I wonder how many of these people are also claiming benefits?

    Report on 04 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • nosbort
    Love rating 160
    nosbort said

    So report him to HMRC, firstly you have a moral duty to do so and secondly if you have evidence you are obliged by law to report any crime of which you are aware. If YOU don't report it then who is going to? are HMRC psychic?

    Report on 04 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • sludgeguts
    Love rating 56
    sludgeguts said

    Report him to HMRC? You are joking?

    I was recently made redundant & was headhunted by the taxi firm who were taking on the contract. My skills and especially experience were invaluable to them.

    I was told I would be given 16hours per week @ £7/hour - yeah, right - not for a fully qualified bus driver with all the additional disability experience.

    I told the guy that the wage was too low and 16 hours was not enough.

    seemingly, that's what they all do - 16 hours on the books then go sign on & straight back to work for cash in hand as many hours as you like.

    Some of us have morals. Of course I reported this but was told I needed more evidence - is that my job?

    And, of course, as soon as any officials swoop on the taxis, they scream racism.

    I have also reported them to police, DVLA and local authority - I noticed their new-ish fleet of minibuses, sat behind one & the taxi plate said ABC 123, white [minibus], I said to my colleague - "what colour is that minibus?" we both agreed it was silver. 10 minutes later, we were sat behind the same vehicle - or so we thought - again, taxi plate said ABC 123, white [minibus] - I pointed this out to my colleague because this minibus WAS white. Buy a fleet of identical vehicles, get a load of duplicate plates off ebay & only ever need to pay for official testing etc of ONE vehicle, run the rest into the ground?

    I told officials all this but they didn't seem that interested.

    The local inspectors do seem to be pouncing on taxis more often now, though - we get a report in the local paper every couple of months, usually half a dozen taxis pulled off the roads for being unsafe - yet they never name and shame so we, the paying public, never know who the worst offenders are.

    Report on 04 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • MazDa
    Love rating 1
    MazDa said

    Yes nosbort I wanted to but this guy has a wife and two kids so I wasn't sure what to do. Anyway a friend of mine who is incensed about it all has taken his business card and he is going to do it. however I have asked will he wait until I have moved from my house first (got another buyer now) because he has got relatives in my street and I do not want any trouble!

    Report on 04 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • MazDa
    Love rating 1
    MazDa said

    And yes Sludgeguts I know exacltly what you mean by the racist thing! Also if they took all the taxi drivers of this blokes ilk off the road there would be none left tin the town! I reckon they are all at it. The problem is most of the officials are the same race. How do you know if they are not related when you report something? Do not get me wrong not everyone in this town is like that but I believe it is something to do with their cast system. My son works with an Asian guy and he has told him they do not regard it as cheating but a loophole in the law and if the government are stupid enough to let them get away with it they will continue to do so!

    Report on 04 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • Tanni
    Love rating 92
    Tanni said

    My experience shows that most taxi drivers are rather dodgy when it comes to declaring their earnings. Report as many as you can.

    Do not forget to report the various politicians and cheif execs who hardly pay any tax in the UK.

    I worked for a building firm last year, did six months until I realised that the company had been issued a new company number. Couple of more months passed and no wages had arrived so I queried with the boss and he was too busy planning a holiday with his entire family and extended relatives so he he couldn't respond to my our other employees concerns. A month passed and I met a customer who advised that I was the owner of this new firm...I laughed of off until he showed me that this dodgy director/boss of ours had secretly used my details and paid £5 to an Internet business setup firm: basically he had failed to return his tax returns and showed companies house that he was not trading...secondly he did fraud by registering me as a director of the same company but with a slight change in the wording, he had used Limited instead of LTD and this was enough to fool companies house,the tax man and many customers whom he had robbed of there payments for building work.it took me three months and loads of stress to have my name removed from this firm. I was worried sick that this guy has my details that iwentto the police,the police advised that this was a civil matter and that I should report him to companies house! What a joke.so I reported the guy as doing fraud and three months later my name was removed from his dodgy building firm. Companies house were pretty much useless, however one employee at companies house checked the boss's details and advised that he had setup various companies in the past and exactly one year later he would say he was not trading or had never traded. This guy was such a blatant fraud that nobody picked him up. He is just a small fish but left a few of us out of pocket by sums of £100000. This guy told us he had paid our taxes and NI contributions and of course this was all bull.

    Now when he returned from his holiday he went to a solicitor and told him that he has no money and is bust. The guy had been on holiday and purchased a large plot of land, paid for a lavish holiday and weddings for his cousins.

    This guy is still walking and operating freely as they hide behind the limited liability clause. What a joke, further more the police who I had a lot of respect for are also a joke, companies house are more like a circus of clowns and not fit for purpose.

    What a joke. All done with full knowledge of tax man and companies house.

    Report on 04 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • jonnie2thumbs
    Love rating 107
    jonnie2thumbs said

    I'm just so thankful that we White English people never do cash in hand jobs or fiddle our taxes.

    I've also NEVER seen a gay person filling in his tax return - bloody tax avoiding gays.

    If anyone has any suspicion at all of anyone trying to keep back a few quid to feed their children, rather than giving it over to buy more jet fighters and missiles, they should inform HMRC, HRMC[sic], the police, the Queen and their local branch of the NAZI party

    Report on 04 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  2 loves
  • electricblue
    Love rating 769
    electricblue said

    @Tanni

    "Do not forget to report the various politicians and chief execs who hardly pay any tax in the UK."

    Who, for example?

    How would you have any experience as to whether 'most' taxi drivers are rather dodgy in their tax declarations? Racist and generalised rants add nothing to informed debate. If you worked two months without pay and had taken six months to notice a change in company registration number you're surely hardly the sharpest knife in the box....

    Report on 05 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • fender
    Love rating 27
    fender said

    What about the royals, Cameron, Goerge and Willy Haig they all have benefits in kind coming out of their ears. That in my opinion is where these dictators and modern day members of Cameron's Gestapo and KGB should start.

    Instead its always the easy to corner, scare harass & threaten etc etc. sitting target.

    The ordinary small business owners are trapped, cornered, harassed and interrogated over and over again by these over paid, easy life, pen pushing parasites simply in the hope, they will find something, anything, they can use to get extra tax and 100% penalties out of us.

    They care little for the victim all they are interested in is twisting and manipulating something in the hope they can scare you into owning up to something, even if its something you haven't fiddled in the first place. In my experience, the fact you have not fiddled it is irrelevant, they are their to get their target & bonus ( a bit like a poor mans version of a banker ) if nothing else, they work under the pretext that sooner or later you will give in and fall, but if not, it justifies their existence at the tax payers ( our the self employed ) expense.

    Most of the time victims are picked out of a hat by these parasites, often for no more than a fishing & exercise. They don't care that while you are wasting time putting up with these parasite, you are losing business. The important thing to them is they show their misplaced power over you as their victim, and if nothing else it justify their existence as an over paid tax inspector.

    They treat business owners with contempt instead of the respect they are due.

    What Cameron, his cohorts and his, tax Gestapo should remember, without business owners willing to work 100 plus hours, 7 days week in week out, often without holidays. These people risk everything they own to borrow money just to get a business up and running. Cameron's cohorts should consider the above and remember without these forward looking business people, there really would be no money to pay these parasites with. The self employed are, the real UK back bone. The self employed are already taxed to death from excessive business rate's, they are forced to be un paid VAT & PAYE collectors and forced to keep and pay bad employee's and put up with the rigged employment tribunal farce.

    Maybe a few tax inspectors should try a week in the real world with a proper job, instead of taking the easy option of endless holidays, loads of full pay sick days, bank holidays a fat wage packet and guaranteed early pension at the end, yes go on you lot, try the real world lets see how long you all last.

    I have direct experience of being an innocent victim of these toe rag parasites who choose to investigate something that isn't there to investigate.

    I put up with 8 years of their digging up my garden ( so to speak ) looking for a body that wasn't there. Throughout they continued to make stuff up, one thing after another simply in the hope I would hold my hand up to something.

    All they found after 8 years was in-fact, I had substantially over paid tax. Not under paid.

    I did not even get an apology and so far they have avoided paying the fee's the revenue ran up. My losses over the 8 years which they caused continually playing the threatening game.

    Once it ended, I complained to the adjudicators office. This government outfit is supposed to be independent. But I found its anything but. Its funded by the government as no more than a wild goose chase buffer zone, its basically there to lose any complaint against Camerons Gestapo in dust and red tape.

    If I had my time over again.

    I would today ignore any and every request to be interviewed.

    Instead I would Insist any question they wish to put to me, they do so on paper in black and white.

    But first and foremost I at the very first request do a Freedom of information request against them. If they respond which they are by law supposed to, I could then see what, if anything, they had against me.

    At the end of the day look where the money goe's when they get it.

    £100m and more, wasted on the west coast train line fiasco.

    How many 100m per year do the royals get?.

    How many 100m a year is wasted on MP's expenses?

    More millions on pointless quango's.

    More millions wasted paying judges to reports to be chucked in the bin.

    How many billion a year is wasted on the Welsh Government who in turn waste it on hair brain ill thought out ideas and fads.

    Millions paid to thousands of over paid so called top end civil servants, put them all on a max. national average or show them the door. The list goes on.

    Surely if they got the governments own accounts in order first, and instead stopped wasting our money, then they could cut the deficit to zero in a couple of years.

    Report on 05 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  2 loves
  • electricblue
    Love rating 769
    electricblue said

    @Fender

    Give it a rest. It looks like your tax investigations started under a Labour government anyway and the Inland Revenue these days can barely find it's own rear with a map compared to how they used to operate. I've been in business or self employed for the last 30 years and had two tax investigations but your rants make no sense financially or otherwise. MP's expenses are a tiny part of government spending and it cost more investigating them than was found to be wrongfully claimed. Most Tories could earn more in full time business than they get as MP's . Labour MP's are a different kettle of fish when it comes to value in the real world. Unless there is some huge vacuum in the job market, would a fat useless waste of oxygen like Prescott have been able to earn hundreds of thousands a year?

    Report on 06 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  1 love
  • fender
    Love rating 27
    fender said

    Electric Blue.

    Maybe its time you give it a rest, who are you some sort of moderator? I see you dismiss everyone's comments excluding your own as a rant.

    So you have had two investigations with the HMRC leaches, Go for the hat trick if you want, have three investigations if you like the HMRC parasites so much.

    My comment was no rant it was fact. so up yours pal.

    Report on 06 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  2 loves
  • John Fitzsimons
    Love rating 43
    John Fitzsimons said

    Ladies and gents

    The comment facility is here so that you can discuss the topic at hand, rather than resort to personal attacks. Kindly pack it in

    John

    Editor

    Report on 07 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • UKinformedinvestor
    Love rating 2
    UKinformedinvestor said

    I see HMRC are putting out a name and shame list of Tax Evaders....years after objecting to when we at the UK Informed Investor named and shamed those who work for HMRC who tried to frighten members of the public by telling them that they owed HMRC both NIC and Interest when they didn't. As an example they tried to make companies pay NIC on "Benefits in Kind" both outside the Statute of Limitations 1980 and the European decision in King v United Kingdom. That latter case stipulated that where HMRC caused delay they could not get the Interest. So what did they do? They wrote to some of those Companies "offering" to halve the Interest if they paid within a certain time period. Rip off Britain starts at HMRC and those perpetrators should be behind bars with the Tax Evaders.

    www.ukinformedinvestor.co.uk will continue to name and shame them as well as praise those who are doing a good job. But we must weed out these intimidators too.

    Report on 11 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • ajrr1
    Love rating 19
    ajrr1 said

    John - much as some of the comments may raise some valid points, there are some rather insulting racial stereotypes being banded about in a number of the comments.

    I really think this is inappropriate in this day any age. In my job I would be sacked (rightly so) for making such blatant links between illegal behaviour and race/ethinicity. In my personal life I suspect I'd lose a lot of friends.

    Might I suggest you close comments on this topic to prevent any further damage?

    Report on 11 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • Henry-GBG
    Love rating 57
    Henry-GBG said

    Smuggling garlic a criminal tax fraud?

    Report on 11 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • Pennydot
    Love rating 0
    Pennydot said

    I too am enamored with HMRC. In late August 2012 they asked me to compete Self Assessment forms for 2009/10, 2010/11 and 2011/12 even though (when I was working, I am retired) I have always paid through PAYE. I was bemused but did as asked and sent the completed documents back on the 12th September 2012.

    I have now been fined £115.66 for not sending the 2009/2010 outstanding tax. I have no idea when it was due, but can only assume it was before I was asked to complete the forms, and to add insult to injury, as there was tax due to me for 2011/12 the 2009/10 tax was deducted before it was refunded.

    Too many departments and no joined up thinking!

    Report on 11 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • electricblue
    Love rating 769
    electricblue said

    If it takes up more than a full screen and we have to scroll - it's a rant, not a comment. We all have opinions, but don't have to write War and Peace on a subject.

    As far as filling out self assessment forms, an untaxed earnings or pension income means you need to fill them out and you will get that advice on your yearly statement from your pension provider. Seems one of the few areas where HMRC actually do have some joined up thinking.

    Report on 11 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • Ripped off
    Love rating 17
    Ripped off said

    Problem with all this is the HMRC staff have far too much power, power thats been pre-rigged in their favour. So it follows everything they issue is pre-loaded with hundreds of pounds worth of threats and fines etc. if, for what ever reason we don't drop everything when they demand it, roll over and give in instantly.

    The HMRC work on the basis we are one, while they are a gang of thousands. Like rat catchers they corner us, once their they won't let go until we give in and pay what ever they demand. Often what they demand is overloaded in their favour, but so what. The HMRC offer little to no help other than scam 0870 & 0845 self help tape recorders for us to try and work our way through. Ultimately it is us, not the HMRC that has the cost of paying someone to claim back what ever has been charged. So it continues........

    This country is supposed to be ruled by consent not dictate.

    I for one don't recall see fines penalties etc etc. in any manifesto as a plan to be adopted once a given party has been elected. I know for a clear fact, I for one, never agreed to fines or penalties. Yet this bunch of pin stripe dictators think they have the consent of the people, to rob & fine us left right and centre. What ever, I know at the least I never consented to or, agreed to being spoken to like a piece of sh*t by these HMRC scum bags, people who's wages, sick days, holidays, perks and early pensions I'm forced to contribute towards. So who did consent to all this? Thats the big question andf the sooner its answered the better. If not, maybe someone can confirm we now do, live in a dictatorship.

    In the meantime, assuming it is still consent we are ruled by, what we need is people to stand up and say enough, is enough, stop all of this crap today. Lets have one big bonfire on News at 10 lets watch as thousands burn their tax returns in disgust at the way we are treated by these scum bags.

    Report on 12 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • tuttogallo
    Love rating 99
    tuttogallo said

    The word you are looking for is "dictat"

    Report on 13 January 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves
  • msmoneywise
    Love rating 27
    msmoneywise said

    HMRC staff have no power, no knowledge and no responsibility! There is no consistent and cohesive working practice any more. I left HMRC because I was tired of shuffling pieces of paper for statistics to look good. If you write a letter and (because HMRC has so much post on hand, it will probably take over a month before they can even look at it) the person who picks it up has to see what you want and if possible, answer your query or solve your problem. If you get tired of waiting for an answer, then write again, they'll not link up the two bits of correspondence and the second person will ask you via letter what you want!!! Who is responsible for all these delays? No one! There is a no-blame culture in the new HMRC.

    This ping-pong game can go on and on. I was trained to work whole cases and take responsibility for my work. I managed 6000 tax payers (now called 'clients') myself, and I was the junior-most staff member! I had a bunch of employers and dealt with their employees, their employer returns for PAYE, benefits in kind, allowance claims, etc. without any problems. However, being a big fan of "if it is working really well, break it" HMRC brought in centralized working, which took away all the responsibility and authority from trained staff and put it in the hands of call-centre idiots who are put on the job after minimal training. After 20 years, I left with a reduced pension of only £200 per month, and am happy to be gone. HMRC is a terrible place to work for these days.

    HMRC have lost my 2010 tax return 3 times. I complained, but never got anywhere, and to add insult to injury they sent me a letter saying that my 2011 tax return was lost as well, but that if I didn't send a duplicate immediately they would have to treat it as a late tax return and fine me! What can you do? I seriously doubt that these task forces are really effective. At best they'll be semi-trained recovery officers, at worst they will be bullies with bailiff-like authority to enter, search and take away. May God save us from the new HMRC.

    Report on 13 February 2013  |  Love thisLove  0 loves

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