Retailer sentenced after running illicit alcohol syndicate

31 August, 2016

A Glasgow off-licence owner who ran a illicit alcohol supply ring has been spared jail but given 200 hours community service and a 12-month prohibition order.

Raminder Singh Gosal, 39, who ran Mindy’s Mini Mart on Glasgow’s Shettleston Road, guilty to counterfeiting thousands of UK excise duty labels and evading £47,560 in duty and VAT.

Gosal used the counterfeit labels to divert alcohol, intended for sale abroad, into the local market and evading the UK excise duty.

HMRC, who busted Gosal back in 2011, called him a “kingpin” who supplied fellow retailers and promised it was taking steps to assess the extent of Gosal’s criminal profits and to “recover his ill-gotten gains”.

Anne-Marie Gordon, assistant director of fraud investigation service at HMRC, said: “Gosal’s actions cheated the exchequer out of significant sums of money, which funded a lifestyle well beyond his legitimate income. His counterfeiting fraud allowed him to sell cases of spirits at a very low price, giving him an unfair advantage over his honest competitors.

“Gosal set out to deliberately defraud taxpayers and line his own pockets at the expense of vital public services, which alcohol duty and VAT help to fund. HMRC won’t hesitate to investigate where we suspect that illicit alcohol is being sold. The public’s help is vital, so if you see something, say something, and call the Customs hotline on 0800 59 5000.”

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