Gravesend fraudsters jailed for 15 years over £11.7 million scam
PUBLISHED: 09:27 22 April 2015 | UPDATED: 11:04 22 April 2015
Pair were half of a "very organised operation"
TWO men from Gravesend have been jailed for a total of 15 years for their roles in a fraud worth £11.7 million.
Narinder Chada, 62, of The Russetts, Meopham, and Gurmail Dosanjh, 46, of Singlewell Road, Gravesend, cheated the taxpayer by keeping VAT instead of passing it on to the government.
The pair were found guilty of conspiracy to cheat the public purse at Southwark Crown Court last month after a two-month trial. They were jailed for seven and eight years respectively yesterday.
The duo had set up fraudulent companies dealing in carbon credits – which allow companies to produce more carbon dioxide than they would otherwise be allowed – buying them at market value, selling them on the cheap and charging their clients VAT.
Police started investigating the fraud in May 2011, but it took another year to make the arrests and three more years to bring the case to court.
Father and son duo Daniel Andrew Barrs and Daniel Barrs, from Surrey, facilitated money laundering for this fraud and a previous case dealt with by HMRC in 2012. The total amount laundered was more than £23 million.
Barrs, 65, of New Place Gardens, Lingfield, and his son, 29, of Suffolk Close, Horley, were jailed for seven and three years respectively for facilitating money laundering.
Detective Constable Phil Kershaw, from the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate, said: “The offenders moved the money between several companies to try to cover their tracks. We followed the trail of laundered cash from the UK to Europe, the Middle East and as far as New Zealand and Australia.
“This was a very organised operation, but we were determined to piece together enough evidence to bring those responsible to justice.
“This was not a victimless crime. By depriving the Government of millions of pounds of VAT, the offenders were in effect stealing from all UK taxpayers. The money should have been spent on schools, hospitals and other services.
“We will now attempt to recoup as much of the money for the taxpayer as possible.”