England

Arrests over multi-million-pound alcohol tax fraud

Fourteen people have been arrested over a suspected £40m money laundering fraud.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) said it believed the group sold alcohol on the UK market without paying duty and tax.

A series of dawn raids was carried out on Tuesday in London, Essex, Cardiff, Berkshire, Kent, the West Midlands and Lancashire.

£650,000 in cash and five lorry-loads of beer and wine, as well as computers and business records were seized.

Those arrested, aged between 25 and 60, were held on suspicion of offences under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Alan Tully, assistant director of criminal investigation at HMRC, said: "This is a major investigation into what we suspect is a well-organised and professional attempt to launder the proceeds from a significant alcohol fraud and steal £40m from the UK economy."

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