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Dirty money still owed by crook.

Byline: ALASTAIR MCNEILL

A Bridge of Allan fraudster has failed to pay a PS207,339 proceeds of crime order more than three and a half years after it was imposed.

Michael Voudouri - once the UK's most wanted tax dodger who lit his cigars with PS50 notes - had laundered PS11.6m between 2001 and 2004.

He spent three years conning the taxman of VAT from his computer component company Q-Tech Distribution.

Voudouri used some of the cash to pay for an impressive house in Bridge of Allan. He also opened a designer clothes shop in Stirling.

Figures recently released by the Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service (SCTS) under freedom of information laws show there is currently PS6.9m in total outstanding in confiscation orders compared to PS6.5m last year. Voudouri's order for PS207,339 was imposed in May 2015.

He had been jailed for more than 11 years the previous year for conning the taxman of the PS11.6m.

The sentence was imposed after Voudouri had gone on the run for 15 months after pleading guilty to fraud charges at the High Court in Glasgow in October 2012.

He had been arrested in northern Cyprus and returned to Scotland to face the sentence.

The High Court had heard that Voudouri had hidden his ill-gotten gains in tax havens in the British Virgin Islands and Swiss bank accounts.

He had also set up companies across the world - including the US state of Delaware - in a bid to confuse the taxman.

The SCTS said PS5.3m of the total money currently outstanding in confiscation orders was "in arrears" while PS1.6m was "on track" to be paid through instalments.

They added: "By its nature, a confiscation order is a financial penalty which may take some time to recover in full."

The Scottish Government said powers introduced last year to seize assets gains through crime would make enforcement of confiscation orders "easier and faster."

CAPTION(S):

Tax dodger Michael Voudouri

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Publication:Stirling Observer (Stirling, Scotland)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jan 4, 2019
Words:327
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