"We will always seek to reclaim criminal money"
Four convicted Black Country restaurant bosses who were involved in an £800,000 tax fraud have been ordered to pay back £600,000 or face more time in jail.
The businessmen scammed the revenue out of £500,000 in tax at their Panache restaurants, including one in Birmingham Road, Sutton Coldfield.
The sum included failing to pay £240,000 in VAT following the sale of their former Stafford and Lichfield restaurants.
The group also lied about their takings to avoid tax and even stole tips from employees, with one spending money on holidays to Florida, Mauritius and Dubai.
Cash was also sent to Bangladesh and used to buy rental properties in the Midlands.
In 2018, Mohammed Sharif Uddin, Mizanur Rahman, Sadiqur Rahman and Abul Kamal were jailed for a total of 10 years and banned from acting as directors for a total of 24 years.
HMRC has already managed to recover £490,000 after confiscation hearings against Kamal, Uddin and Sadiqur Rahman in May 2021.
At a final confiscation hearing on October 8, 2021, Mizanur Rahman was ordered to pay £110,940. He must make the payment within 28 days otherwise he faces a further 12 months in prison.
Debbie Porter, assistant director, Fraud Investigation Service at HMRC, said:
“Our work does not stop when someone is convicted. We will always seek to reclaim criminal money and assets.
“Confiscated proceeds of crime are redistributed into the public purse, which helps fund vital services such as schools and hospitals.
“If you know of anyone who is committing tax fraud, you can report them to HMRC online, or call our Fraud Hotline on 0800 788 887.”
HMRC investigators found that the men concealed most of their cash takings and kept staff tips from a restaurant in Sutton Coldfield.
The Rahmans also failed to pay £240,000 VAT on the sale of their former Stafford and Lichfield restaurants.
The men also lied about their income, resulting in another £295,000 in tax being stolen.
All four admitted fraud during a hearing at Birmingham Crown Court on December 14, 2017 and were jailed in November 2018.
Mizanur Rahman, aged 47, of Wednesbury, was jailed for three years.
Sadiqur Rahman, aged 48, was sentenced to three years in prison.
Both men were banned from acting as a director for seven years.
Mohammed Sharif Uddin, aged 51, of Wednesbury, was sentenced to two years prison, suspended for two years.
Abul Kamal, aged 44, of West Bromwich, was sentenced to two years in prison, suspended for two years.
Both men were disqualified from acting as a director for five years.