Tax advisor jailed for fraud

AN ESSEX tax advisor has been jailed for three years after being convicted of money laundering.

Anthony Bond

AN ESSEX tax advisor has been jailed for three years after being convicted of money laundering.

Neil Macpherson, of Dunmow Road, Great Bardfield, set up bank accounts and fronted companies which were involved in frauds across Europe orchestrated by Frenchman Michel Namer, revenue and customs officials said.

The frauds were “an attack” on the VAT systems of France, Italy and Spain and between 2004 and 2006 and fraudulent payments totalling more than 35 million Euros passed though bank accounts in the UK and Monaco, which Macpherson controlled on behalf of Namer.

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Steve Baker, Assistant Director of HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) Criminal Investigations, said: “HM Revenue & Customs will not tolerate anyone abusing their professional position of trust to assist criminals in their attempts to disguise income or launder the cash from their crimes.

“Macpherson abused his position of trust to launder the proceeds of organised crime and as such was as guilty of an attack on European VAT systems as those who organised and ran the original fraud.”

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Macpherson is a qualified taxation advisor and was previously a tax partner at two large and respected London accountancy firms before setting up his own practice called Salmac Management Limited in 2004.

He was running this company when he agreed to act as Namer's “frontman” allowing him anonymity from various law enforcement agencies across Europe whilst perpetrating frauds against their taxation systems.

Macpherson was convicted on four out of five counts of money laundering at Isleworth Crown Court following a six-week trial. He had denied the charges.

Namer is currently serving a six-year prison sentence for frauds carried out in the UK following the conclusion of a HMRC investigation in 2005.

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