Husband and wife tax fraudsters jailed

A husband, wife and their three daughters have been sentenced for their involvement in a multi million pound tax and money laundering fraud following a successful investigation by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

Isaac William (61) from London, who ran a business supplying security guards to the construction industry, was jailed for failing to declare £5m of business profits and not paying the correct amount of tax due. His wife Venus (54), and their three daughters Maria Gunasekara (33), Sylvia William (34) and Sophie William (26) were also sentenced for laundering £1.3m from the business into their own bank accounts.

Simon De Kayne, Assistant Director of Criminal Investigation for HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC), said:

“Isaac William failed to declare his company’s income or pay taxes of £1.1m from his business activities. The amount he owes now stands at £2.6m including interest. His wife and daughters then continued the web of deceit by laundering over £1.3m through their personal bank accounts. Their criminal activities ensured they were able to fund luxury lifestyles and further increase their wealth at the expense of the taxpayer. We will continue to pursue those involved in this type of criminal activity and bring them before the courts. We will now work to reclaim the proceeds of their crime.

“If anyone has information about individuals or business that may be involved in this type of crime, I urge them to contact the Tax Evasion hotline by calling 0800 788 887 or via the website www.hmrc.gov.uk/tax-evasion.”

HMRC investigators found that between 1999 and 2008 Williams’ businesses Solomon Co-Operative Services/Chris Solo Co-Operative Services (CSCS) and Euro Co-Operative Services received income of £6m. Isaac William submitted partnership, personal income tax, VAT and PAYE returns to HMRC declaring the income as £1m. Some of the undeclared profits were transferred from the business bank accounts into his wife’s and daughters’ personal accounts.

The family members used the money to finance the purchase of two properties in Pakistan, properties in the UK and several trips to Dubai and Pakistan. They withdrew large amounts of cash and transferred some of it into bank accounts they held in Dubai and Pakistan.

Isaac William pleaded guilty to ten counts of tax fraud on 10 May 2011 and was sentenced on 16 December 2011 at Kingston Crown Court.

Venus William and their daughters Maria Gunasekara, Sylvia William and Sophie William were all found guilty of money laundering offences on 13 October 2011, after a trial at Kingston Crown Court.

Confiscation proceedings are underway.

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