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Tag: Fraudsters

Taxpayers could lose billions in ‘bounce back’ loans to fraudsters

Taxpayers could lose billions in ‘bounce back’ loans to fraudsters

Business
Taxpayers face losses of as much as £26bn on coronavirus "bounce back" loans that cannot be repaid or are the subject of fraud, the spending watchdog has found.The scheme provides rapid access to 100% government-backed finance worth up to £50,000 to struggling small firms, with fewer checks than other COVID-19 business loan initiatives. It has proved much more popular than anticipated when launched in May, with the total value of loans now expected to be £38-£48bn, up from an initial estimate of £18bn-£26bn. Image: The scheme was launched to support struggling small firms But it relies on firms self-certifying details of their applications and no credit checks by lenders on existing customers, increasing the risks of losses to taxpaye...
Fraudsters jailed for £107m 'cynical' green tax scam

Fraudsters jailed for £107m 'cynical' green tax scam

Business
Six men who orchestrated an "audacious and cynical" tax fraud have been jailed for between 11 years and 20 months.They persuaded wealthy people to invest in environmental projects in exchange for tax breaks, but then used the money to fund lavish lifestyles, buying overseas property and luxury holidays.HM Revenue & Customs said it could have lost up to £107m as a result.HMRC's Simon York said the men showed "complete disregard" for the ecological causes they claimed to be supporting."These individuals thought they had worked out the perfect fraud," he said, adding that work had started to recover the proceeds of their crime.'Bare-faced dishonesty'HMRC said the group, led by "self-styled ringleader" and scientist Michael Richards, enticed 730 high earners to invest in research and devel...