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Poor records lands company boss with criminal record

A  director who failed to keep proper business records has been convicted of breaches of the money laundering regulations (MLR) involving an estimated £170,000, in the first prosecution of its kind by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

Grenville Eames (47), who runs JGE Commercials Ltd, a truck and plant hire company, was arrested after early morning raids at his home and business addresses in September 2012. An investigation found that Eames had failed to keep the required records for large business transactions, despite warnings after HMRC inspections.

Adrian Farley, Assistant Director of Criminal investigation, HMRC, said:

“The money laundering regulations are in place for a very good reason, to protect the public and to stop crooks benefiting from their criminal profits. HMRC takes a serious view of anyone who breaches the regulations and will look to prosecute those that do so. Eames kept poor records and had numerous chances to correct the situation but failed to do so. As a result he was charged and prosecuted.”

JGE Commercials Ltd, based in Totternhoe near Dunstable, buys and sells commercial and large plant vehicles. Eames registered the company as a high value dealership (HVD), a legal requirement of the MLR’s. All HVD’s who take €15,000 or more, or the sterling equivalent in cash, must provide documentary evidence of checks made on a clients’ identity and the source of the funds for the transaction. Eames failed to provide almost all of the necessary records to HMRC.

Eames was fined £16,000 by Luton Crown Court today (15 November 2013) and JGE Commercials Ltd was fined £16,000. The company was also ordered to pay a confiscation order £135,900 within three months.