Man jailed for £4.5 million VAT fraud

A man from London was sentenced yesterday at Guildford Crown Court to 7 years in jail after being found guilty of evading £4.5 million in VAT.

Harjit Singh Takkar, 32, of 9 Lampton Park Road, Hounslow, TW3 4HS was convicted and sentenced on three counts; Conspiracy to Cheat the Public Revenue (seven years imprisonment), Cheat (three years imprisonment) and Fraudulent Trading (two years imprisonment). The sentences will be served concurrently.

Steve Baker Assistant Director Criminal Investigation South said: "This case was successfully prosecuted by the Revenue & Customs Prosecutions Office which shows that together we will successfully pursue and bring to justice those breaking the law to protect all our communities from the effects of criminal activity "

The Court heard that Harjit Singh Takkar, between May 2004 and August 2004 trading as Hi-Profile Ltd, made purchases of mobile phones from suppliers in France. These items did not attract VAT as they were imports. The phones were then sold on, usually the next day, to a further company who in turn sold the items on to numerous other companies.

Enquiries showed that these companies were then exporting the phones, usually to Dubai. This resulted in a further loss of revenue as tax was being reclaimed by the exporter. In one instance an export was traced to a German company from whom Takkar’s suppliers had allegedly purchased phones.

HH Judge Stewart commended the exemplary way in which the investigation was brought before the court.