A man found guilty in London of a 14-million-pound (about $22 million) value-added tax fraud involving computer equipment was sentenced this week for five years in jail. Amiram Hashash, who was general manager of Compulog Ltd. from 1997 to 2000, purchased large quantities of computer components from various "missing" traders. Compulog reclaimed the VAT on these invoices and made payments for the invoiced items to a large number of overseas third-party accounts that Hashash controlled, Wood Green (London) Crown Court found.
Customs & Excise arrested Hashash on March 16, 2000. A search of his home revealed that it contained blank templates for the missing trader companies and evidence showing him to be the signatory of the missing trader bank accounts. Further investigation showed him to have accrued significant property interests in his native Israel, which were believed to have been purchased using proceeds of the fraud.
ZDNet U.K.'s Matt Loney reported from London.
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