By Claire Valdini
HM Revenue & Customs says three of UK's 20 most wanted are thought to be hiding out in emirate
Three of the Britain’s 20 most wanted tax fugitives are thought to be living in Dubai, authorities said after taking the unusual step of releasing the names and details of the country’s biggest tax evaders.
HM Revenue & Customs published the details of the nineteen men and one woman, all wanted for payments totalling £765m ($1.2bn).
While many on the list are thought to be hiding in Britain, others are said to be living abroad in countries including Monaco, South Africa and Iraq.
The list includes the names of three men, Hussain Chohan, Adam Umerji and Nasser Ahmed, all of whom are suspected by HM Revenue & Customs to be living in Dubai.
Hussain Chohan is wanted for failing to appear in court for his part in an estimated £200m fraud. The 44-year old British-Pakistani was sentenced to eleven years in absentia for smuggling and fraud offences and failing to appear in court. He has also been served with a £33m confiscation order.
Adam Umerji, aka Shafiq Patel, is also thought to be living in Dubai. The 34-year old Briton was sentenced to 12 years in prison for VAT fraud and money laundering in absentia.
Nasser Ahmed is wanted for his role in a £156m VAT fraud scam. Ahmed, who is believed to be residing in Pakistan or Dubai, fled the UK prior to his 2005 court verdict. He was sentenced to six years in jail in March 2005 and a warrant has been issued for his arrest.
The publication is part of a government campaign aimed at tackling tax evasion, said Exchequer Secretary David Gauke.
“The government is absolutely committed to tackling tax evasion and fraud,” said Gauke.
“These criminals have collectively cost the taxpayer over £765m and HMRC will pursue them relentlessly.
“We hope that publishing their pictures in this way will enable members of the public to contribute to the effort to catch them.”
No surprise there...
Is there an extradition treaty between UK and UAE? UAE does not need such rogue elements.
Paying taxes is an integral part of being a citizen. Don't want to pay taxes? You can no longer be a citizen. I think the UK should not allow tax evaders from renewing their passports abroad; that should force them to return to the UK where they would face justice.
As for extradition, since there are no taxes in the UAE, it would not be a crime here to not pay taxes, and so there is no basis to extradite someone. Would this apply for everyone or just for citizens of the country that requests extradition?
I don't see British Govt going far in this case. Some of their smart operating citizen (a.k.a. tax evadors) are better motivated, better informed and probably more enterprising. Over taxation can sometimes be counter productive and you get a few flying off the nest and far off the radar.
Its not paying taxes which people try to avoid, its paying taxes to any government whom wastes the hard earned money of citizens. Just imagine 50% of what you earn every year is given to a government to spend without justification or accountability. Everyone tries to avoid paying tax in one way or another.
How can such people enter the UAE? Is there no proper screening to protect the country from such people? The UAE cannot be the home of such criminals.
Aren't all ' expats ' in the UAE who come from tax paying countries tax evaders? Hypocrites who claim patriotism when they no longer do the minimum of their duty to their homeland while chastising others for the slightest mistake?
I suggest from now on all 'expats' shall be called
" Taxpats "
These guys are not tax evaders, they are criminals. They are responsible for illegal importation of cigarettes and other goods and blatant VAT fraud. With these guys it is systemic fraud - basically theft - thus the 12 year sentences handed out. However, it would be hard to have them deported as the UK has just refused to hand over Amanda Allen who skipped the country after defaulting on her mortgage. It goes both ways.
Many British citizens are hiding in Dubai and escaping paying taxes in UK ,many security companies here in Dubai that we know ,yet the non clearance of the British system and many holes can be used ..
I'm a British expat, I still pay my national insurance contributions and I pay income tax on the property I own in the UK and rent out. I also use none of the facilities in the UK but contribute to the UK coffers. Many UK expats do exactly the same.
And what do you offer 'nirsly' apart from ignorant comment?