A mobile phone wholesaler has been slapped with an 11-year ban from being a company director after participating in a plan to gain more than £2m in VAT refunds, according to the Insolvency Service, which branded his antics "a stain on the public purse".
Shiraz Ahmed, director of Ealing-based G Comms – a wholesale mobile phone business – was disqualified as a director for 11 years by the High Court for participating in "contrived transactions with a view to gaining VAT refunds of over £2m".
Ahmed was involved in missing trader intra community (MTIC) fraud, more commonly known as carousel fraud, which consists of large amounts of electrical items being invoiced rapidly and repeatedly around trading supply chains.
G Comms was wound up in 2013, following an investigation by a specialist team at the Insolvency Service into unpaid VAT owed to HMRC. Ahmed was only disqualified in June, for the period from 27 July 2016 to 26 July 2027. He cannot promote, manage or be the director of a limited company during that time.
Paul Titherington, official receiver in the Public Interest Unit of the Insolvency Service, said:
"This type of VAT fraud is very serious and a high priority for HMRC and the Insolvency Service. MTIC fraud has been a great strain on the public purse and has cost the taxpayer many billions of pounds in fraudulent VAT claims. The Insolvency Service is committed to making directors account for their actions."
This is one of a number of cases highlighted by the Insolvency Service. In a similar case last year, mobile phone dealer Fiaz Razzak Malik, a director of Firma Consulting Limited, was disqualified by the High Court for 13 years.
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