Restaurant owner jailed for tax fraud

Jaipur restaurant in Repton

A restaurant owner has been jailed for three years for a £480,000 tax fraud that was discovered when investigators uncovered a hidden sales book dating back five years.

Nazrul Islam, 52, from Great Barr, Birmingham ran the Jaipur restaurant, in Repton, Derbyshire.

Nazrul Islam

An investigation by HM Revenue and Customs found Islam hid up to half of the restaurant’s sales in a bid to evade tax payments.

HMRC officers discovered meticulous records of daily takings between 2012 and 2017 at his house, which did not match up with sales he submitted in his VAT returns.

They also discovered that Islam had registered a different card payment machine, which was sending payments into a separate account.

Islam admitted evading VAT payments and income tax and national insurance payments and was jailed at Birmingham Crown Court. He was also disqualified from being a director for seven years.

Richard Paris, Assistant Director, Fraud Investigation Service, HMRC, said: “This was a determined, well planned and long running fraud, which even saw Islam buy and use separate card payment machines.

“Tax fraud is not a victimless crime. Islam deprived vital UK public services of this money and he gained an unfair advantage over honest competitors who pay the tax they owe.”

HMRC seized £22,170 from Islam’s home in April 2017 that was found hidden behind a large marble wardrobe and has since been forfeited. Action to recover further money is now underway.