Fuel fraud raids: Pair arrested in Gillingham

Two people have been arrested on suspicion of a £200,000 fuel fraud after raids in Gillingham and Rochester in Kent, and Belvedere in London.

Revenue and Customs (HMRC) said the pair were suspected of illegally selling kerosene as duty-paid diesel.

Officers searched a residential address and seized £40,000 in cash, computer equipment and business records.

Pumps and 1,500 litres of what was thought to be illegal fuel were found at one of the business addresses.

Fuel 'laundered'

Kerosene, or red diesel, is used by the farming industry and is "marked" with a dye to designate its lower tax duty.

It can be up to 40% cheaper than diesel typically sold at petrol stations.

An HMRC spokesman said; "It is suspected that rebated kerosene was purchased, laundered and sold illegally to motorists as duty-paid road diesel.

"The estimated unpaid VAT and duty is £200,000."

The man and woman, both aged 58 and from Gillingham, have been released on bail.

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