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Jury goes out in trial of ex-Blue accused of fraud.

JURORS have retired to consider their verdict in the trial of former Everton footballer Tony Thomas who is accused of a "breath-taking" pounds 1.7m VAT fraud.

The ex-Blues and Tranmere player is alleged to have used his position as a former professional footballer to help cheat the public purse.

Thomas, of Greenhill Place, Huyton, is standing trial along with six others accused of a seven-year "arrogant" con. s

The jury has heard the 38-year-old worked with his co-defendants, as well as seven others who have already pleaded guilty, to reclaim VAT on fabricated deals of "zero-rated" items such as kids clothes.

Thomas, who now works as a taxi driver, denies defrauding Customs and Excise (HMRC) or knowing his co-defendants.

Jurors did not reach a verdict yesterday and were continuing their discussions today.
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Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:Aug 12, 2009
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