QC to be charged with failing to pay £600,000 in VAT
A QC is to face charges over an alleged £600,000 VAT fraud, the Crown Prosecution Service announced today.
Rohan Anthony Pershad QC, who practises from London’s Thirty Nine Essex Street, will face one charge of cheating the public revenue.
CPS central fraud division prosecutor Keri Ashworth-Beaumont said the allegation against Pershad is that between 1 June 1999 and 24 September 2011 he cheated the public revenue of approximately £600,000.
She said: ‘The evidence suggests that he charged and received VAT payments on services he provided whilst practising as a barrister but which he knowingly failed to declare or pay to Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs.’
Ashworth-Beaumont said: ‘This decision to prosecute was taken in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors. After careful consideration of all the evidence, I am satisfied there is sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction and it is in the public interest to prosecute this case.’
Pershad was called to the bar in 1991 and made a QC in 2011. His practice includes commercial, professional liability and personal injury work. He will appear before Highbury Corner Magistrates’ Court on 2 August.
In a statement this afternoon, Pershad said: ‘The CPS has announced today that it has issued a summons in relation to an allegation stemming from my personal tax affairs. The CPS has issued this summons while I am still providing HMRC and the CPS with further information and representations setting out why I am not guilty of any offence.
‘I am extremely disappointed that the CPS has seen fit to issue a press release whilst discussions are ongoing.
'For the avoidance of doubt, I deny any dishonest activity in relation to my tax affairs and if a decision is made to pursue this matter in court, I will defend myself vigorously.’