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HMRC can raid a practice just on whistle blowing?

I do not know if there any truth to the rumour below so I will only mention it in very general terms.

An accountant's office was raided recently by HMRC/Police for money laundering. The search of the premises resulted in a very large amount of cash being found. The accountant has been arrested and all the computers were taken away for further investigation. That is all I know so far.

This just worries me. The point on my mind is can this just happen on whistle blowing by the client or member of the public? There has to be some hard evidence for the raid to take place?

What would happen if a client whistle blows and says accountant X is doing something highly illegal with client affairs? What would be next step? Raid by HMRC/Police? This does not sound right.

Please put my mind at rest on this.

Thanks

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24th Mar 2012 12:59

I suppose it depends on how stupid the accountant was

Some of my clients had accountants that have been found guilty of fraud. One of these accountants has been mentioned on here recently, and the other defrauded his clients by banking money intended for HMRC. In both cases their days were numbered as they were either too stupid, or too greedy, to pass up money that could be traced back to them.

Some clients are far too trusting, or naive, and dishonest accountants take advantage but unless you are defrauding your clients, or others, I wouldn't worry about it.

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By Locutus
24th Mar 2012 13:18

I wouldn't worry about it
Without knowing anything about the case you speak about, I suspect there is much, much more to it than just a disgruntled ex-client making a complaint to HMRC / Police. HMRC would probably have had concerns about this accountant for some time. Maybe there were also money laundering reports from multiple sources. Perhaps HMRC / the Police had been interviewing a dodgy client and the client gave chapter and verse on how the accountant set up some scheme / scam and was taking payment in cash for these services. You don't hear many cases of accountants being raided, so that says it all really. Don't worry and enjoy the sunshine!

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24th Mar 2012 14:20

This helps

Thanks Shirley and 0103953. Your response makes a lot of sense.

 

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If you have nothing to worry about .....

then you have nothing to worry about. I don't mean that to be trite but it pretty much sums up the situation.

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