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2009 media releases

Two jailed for multi-million dollar tax fraud
4 November 2009

Two Auckland men behind multi-million dollar schemes in the agricultural industry have each been jailed for two years for tax evasion.

Rashid Karman Sufi and Aamir Farhan were sentenced today in the Auckland District Court after earlier admitting the charges.

In the past five years, 35 people, including Sufi and Farhan, have been convicted for fraud in the industry, involving nearly $35 million.

"These are the latest in a number of convictions for offending of this type, said Richard Philp, Assurance Manager, Investigations.

"We will continue to focus on this to ensure fraudsters are getting the message. It is not a matter of if they will be caught, but when."

"We are determined to see this type of fraud eliminated in the agricultural industry," said Mr Philp.

Sufi admitted 11 charges of tax evasion. An estimated $2,794,998 in GST and PAYE was evaded by companies Sufi was involved in.

Farhan pleaded guilty to 14 charges. Tax estimated at $1,061,708 was involved in his offending.

Both men were involved in schemes similar to others that had been operating in the agricultural industry for some time.

The schemes uncovered follow a similar pattern involving the creation of false invoices, which are used to reduce the liability for GST and PAYE.

For further information:
Catherine Delore
(04) 890 1698
(029) 890 1698
catherine.delore@ird.govt.nz

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Date published: 10 Nov 2009

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