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Thu, May
6 New Articles

A UK-based Ghanaian woman with three different names, has been listed in Britain's top 10 tax dodgers. Christine Ago, also known as Khristine Frimpong and Jennifer Christine Koranteng (left), was sentenced to three years for money laundering offences in 2008.

The new alleged tax-dodgers have been added to the British Government’s most-wanted list but only one of the original 20 has been caught in the past year. All the 10 people listed are said to have cost the British taxpayer between £120,000 and £10 million.

Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) last year published the names and pictures of 20 people accused of fleeing while owing hundreds of thousands of pounds - and in many instances millions.

The appeal helped provide intelligence on 15 of the alleged offenders, no update on four and one was captured, according to HMRC.

A second man not included in the original list of 20 but later said to be on it has also been caught in the last 12 months, the department says.

HMRC has now renewed its appeals on 19 of the suspects while adding 10 new names wanted in connection with offences including VAT fraud, tax evasion and money laundering.

Chancellor George Osborne said the new list will help bring more 'tax fraudsters' to justice. But Labour insisted the most-wanted list had been a 'huge failure' with so many suspects yet to be caught. The new list includes Michael George Voudouri, who pleaded guilty at Glasgow High Court in relation to money laundering linked to VAT fraud but failed to appear for sentencing.

HMRC said the man, aged between 40 and 50, is believed to be residing in northern Cyprus and is estimated to have cost taxpayers £10 million. Anish Anand, aged between 25 and 35, is also included after failing to appear at Croydon Crown Court in April 2013 in relation to £6 million VAT and film tax credit fraud.

Anand was convicted in his absence last month and is thought to be in the UK. Another on the list is Michael 'Arthur' Fearon, aged between 18 and 25, who was charged in connection with evasion of excise duty on nearly 8.4 million Benson & Hedges cigarettes, according to HMRC.

He is also wanted by the UK Border Agency in connection with money laundering offences and also by Republic of Ireland police for driving offences. HMRC said he crossed over the border into Northern Ireland driving a Black Mercedes C200 CDI Sport.

The department estimates the Northern Irish man has cost taxpayers £2million and believes he is in the Republic of Ireland. Mr Osborne said: 'The Government has stepped up HMRC’s enforcement activities to enable them to pursue tax cheats relentlessly around the world.

'The publication of HMRC’s Most Wanted has already helped catch two people wanted for tax fraud. 'This new list will help put more tax fraudsters in the spotlight and bring them to justice.'

But shadow Treasury minister Catherine McKinnell said: 'One year on, it’s a huge failure that 18 of the 20 most wanted tax fraudsters have still not been caught.

'At a time when families are facing a cost of living crisis, it’s even more important that everyone pays their fair share of tax. The Government needs to do better.'

The two men caught since the most-wanted list first emerged are John Nugent, 53, and Anthony Judge, aged between 35 and 45.

HMRC said Nugent fraudulently claimed more than £22million in duty and VAT reclaims. The Crown Prosecution Service announced on May 31 that Nugent had been jailed for four and a half years for an £11 million fraud.

Judge was wanted for his role in arranging financial crimes totaling more than £350,000, HMRC said. He failed to appear at Canterbury Crown Court in 2003 to answer charges relating to money laundering and had not been seen since.

HMRC said Judge was caught at Heathrow Airport on July 4 while travelling on a false passport and has since pleaded guilty.

Ghanaweb

 

Some 300 African refugees currently living behind Hamburg’s Bismarck monument reportedly received €500 from the Italian government to leave for Germany. Officials are unsure what to do next, as they have no shelter and no money.

Swathes of refugees turned up in Italy after war broke out in Libya and, according to a letter from Germany’s Interior Ministry seen by Die Welt newspaper, thousands of them recently received €500 each from the Italian government to leave the country.
“Refugees were slipped the money under the advice that they would go to Germany,” the letter, addressed to refugee advisors, said. In Italy they were offered temporary accommodation, the EU funding for which has since dried up.

Around 300 of these refugees have set up home behind the Bismarck monument in Hamburg, where there is no shelter and, according to refugee rights activists Karawane, cold, wet weather has left lots of them ill.

“They have no legal right to accommodation or state support and it would be irresponsible to give them false hope,” Hamburg Social Affairs Minister Detlef Scheele, told Die Welt. “There is no alternative other than for them to go where they can work and have the legal right to reside, be it Italy or their home country” he added.

The city has offered its new residents free train tickets back to Italy, but to little success.

It seems, the newspaper said, that Italy gave many of the refugees – who despite coming from Libya are largely migrant workers from Togo, Nigeria and Ghana – a temporary pass allowing them to move freely within the Schengen zone.

This pass granted them three months stay somewhere in the Schengen areas of the EU, but many have already been in Germany longer and, according to the letter, those who have not do not appear to be making plans to leave.

Karawane are reportedly looking into whether charges can be filed against Hamburg city for bodily harm through neglect or failure to offer help.

Outside of the bureaucratic world, Hamburg’s churches and charities have been gathering tents for them, as well as offering basic healthcare and advice sessions.

The Local/jcw

The evil that people perpetrate on others is just unbelievable. A woman was getting off the bus in East London, when an unknown attacker dressed in all black approached her and poured acid on her face.

The 20yr old victim, Naomi Oni, said she didn’t see who the attacker was and doesn’t know why someone would pour acid on her.

She received burns to her face, eyes, ears, lips, and tongue.  When she saw her injuries, she said she didn’t want to live any more.  But after going thru so much operations and getting some of her features back, she is now determined to live.

She is a survivor and she says her attacker failed.  May God bless and her and grant her a speedy recovery.  The attacker is still at large. Any information about the attack should be reported to the East London Police