If you know someone who plans to evade tax in the UK, here is the guide to explain some of the major consequences that will explain how destroying it can turn out to be for your business and as a resident in the UK. Over the last decade, there have been observed some shocking tax fraud cases in the UK. However, before we delve into these shocking cases, let’s begin to understand what is tax fraud, what are the possible consequences of tax fraud in the UK, and what are tax fraud penalties if you are caught.
What is Tax Fraud?
Tax fraud is defined as the following according to the definition of HMRC:
“Any deliberate omission, concealment or misinterpretation of information, or the false or deceptive presentation of information or circumstances to gain a tax advantage.”
It could be anyone who is involved in the planning of tax fraud. However, usually, it has been observed that organised criminal gangs are involved in committing such tax fraud just for the sake of their financial benefits. The range of tax fraud-related illegal activities has a wide range and variety. The possible ones include the following:
- False submission of tax returns deliberately
- Offshore gains, wealth and other sources of income are hidden from HMRC.
- Claiming for tax relief and false tax repayments.
- Smuggling of the goods and products that are taxable.
The Consequences of Tax Fraud Cases in the UK
As mentioned earlier that tax affairs are serious matters to HMRC and so is tax fraud. Any individual who is found to be involved in such a tax fraud case will have to face some serious consequences and even more if you decide to do it deliberately. Moreover, HMRC will make sure to recollect the tax fraud amount at its earliest from such frauds. In most tax fraud cases, there are serious fines charged to the person involved along with other financial penalties. In some cases that are extreme and have crossed all the limits the person who is found to be involved with being punished in person.
In several cases, high earners and celebrities, get involved in tax evasion and sometimes they do not even realise that they are being considered as sold a scheme. This makes it very imperative for the high earners to have knowledge about the tax evasions and what are certain limits that they do not have to cross. This will reduce the chances of mistakes and you will be ensured to be on the low side according to the set of rules.
What are Tax Evasion Penalties in the UK?
HMRC will ensure to dish out some harsh penalties for anyone who is found to be involved in violating the tax law and set of rules or trying to plan a tax fraud deliberately. The penalty can be as severe as 200% of the due tax. You can also be jailed for such a crime in the UK. Similar punishments and penalties will be charged for VAT criminals. You will be charged with a hefty amount of fine that could go up to £20,000. This means that the maximum amount of penalties and hefty amounts of fines will be charged if an individual is proven to be involved in the crime.
Shocking Tax Fraud Cases in the UK
Here is an explanation of the shocking tax fraud cases in the UK.
1- Tax Fraud – The £100 Million Environmental
Five persons were involved in a tax fraud scheme. They deliberately worked in a team to steal a heavy amount of £107.9 million and showcased themselves as an environmental investment company. These people were having the details of respectable jobs and took advantage of their respective employment status. They belong to the sector as a solicitor, scientist, merchant bankers, and conductors of well-known companies.
They convinced people to make an investment in their scheme and they will reward them with the benefits. As a result, they were able to gather a lot of money , a little part of the money was invested in the scheme and the rest of the money was invested in buying properties in the UK and Dubai. This was even declared to HMRC as well.
2- £120 Million Fraudsters
This case was committed by a criminal group of nine people in the UK. They somehow managed to steal an amount of £34 million in VAT. Another amount figure of £87 million was earned by this criminal gang by selling illicit alcohol against the law. The drinks were not according to the standards quality, however, the customers were convinced by fraud that they are being given the original product.
Fake details of transactions from the bank were even shown by this gang. The fraudsters have developed a company selling alcohol. They used to charge VAT and gather the amount by selling and then the company would disappear. According to HMRC, this was called the missing trader.
3- The £60 Million HIV Cure Tax Fraud
In this case, the gang managed to convince people to invest in their scheme and gathered a heavy amount of £60 million or more. Two men were involved in tricking wealthy people and making them believe to invest in HIV cure research.
The Bottom Line
Now that you have gathered a fair amount of information about tax fraud cases in the UK, we can say that there is no doubt that the penalties and punishment in the case of tax fraud are severe in the UK. However, you must learn ways to spot such fraud and keep yourself protected from such gangs.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this blog about tax fraud cases in the UK includes its text and graphics in general. This does not intend to disregard any of the professional advice.