The Channel logo

News

By | John Oates 28th February 2005 16:20

Arrests over £580m VAT fraud

Operation Domino nets two

Two men were arrested on Friday over allegations of a £580m VAT fraud involving mobile phones and missing trader fraud.

One, a 45-year old German national, is now awaiting extradition to face money laundering charges in Germany. A 42-year old British man, questioned about alleged money laundering and cheating the public revenue, is out on bail until 9 May when he must report back to Rochdale police station.

More than 200 officers took part in raids in Germany, Holland, Spain, Norway and the UK. Four people were arrested in Germany.

Apart from three addresses in Rochdale, Customs and Excise also visited dozens of other businesses believed to have had contact with the arrested men.

The alleged fraud was first spotted by the Steuerfahndung, the German money laundering and organised crime department. Missing trader fraud cost the British taxpayer between £1.06bn and £1.73bn in 2003/2004. Missing trader, or carousel, fraud involves buying VAT-free products from another EU state, selling them on with VAT added and then doing a runner before paying Customs the VAT they are owed. Mobile phones and computer chips are especially popular with fraudsters.®

Related stories

Missing trader fraudster goes missing
Customs loses VAT weapon
VAT man claims five fraud scalps

alert Send corrections

Opinion

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella
ARA_LIbertad

Chris Mellor

Elliott Management sinks its teeth into retiring godhead
Satya Nadella
cloud computing Fight

Features

Failure to crack next-gen semiconductors threatens to set back humanity
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
SAP Match Insights
Vorsprung durch grossendatatechnik, as we like to say in Germany
Inside the Google Lab where surgeons prepare the human/dog experiment
Big Blue exec tells El Reg what to keep an eye on