London

Barrister Andrew Hill cleared of VAT fraud

An Old Bailey barrister has been cleared of failing to pay £210,000 in VAT.

Andrew Hill, 51, was acquitted by a jury at the Old Bailey of one count of cheating the public revenue.

He was accused of failing to pay £210,000 in VAT between 2004 and 2011.

The court heard that during this time Mr Hill owned two houses in Ealing, one of which was worth £777,000, as well as paid for private schooling for his children.

Mr Hill paid the outstanding VAT after he was arrested and told the jury he was "not particularly minded about financial matters".

He said: "I think that there are some things that I organise very well indeed, and there are other things that I just do not organise well at all.

"I've never looked at a bank statement, ever."

Character witnesses including judges gave evidence as part of Mr Hill's defence.

Speaking after he was cleared, the married father-of-two, who works at the Old Bailey chambers, said: "It's been a terrible time for my family and to a lesser extent for me.

"I repaid all the money, I've got it organised for the future so there's no reoccurrence of that which brought me here."

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites