One Of Ireland's Top Food Producers Has Been Jailed Over A Huge Garlic Scam

Garlic

Photo: Wikipedia/Donovan Govan

DUBLIN (AP) — One of Ireland’s top food producers has been found guilty of dodging taxes on more than 1,000 tons of imported Chinese garlic and sent to prison.Paul Begley admitted running a scam from 2003 to 2007 in which he instructed his Chinese suppliers to produce false export invoices labelling garlic as apples. Irish import duties on apples are just 9 per cent but on garlic up to 232 per cent.

The fraud allowed Begley to avoid €1.4 million ($1.8 million) in tax. He has been trying to repay the sum since Dublin Port customs officers discovered the deception in 2007 but still owes €700,000 ($923,000).

A Dublin judge sentenced Begley to six years in prison Friday.

Begley Brothers Ltd. employs 150 people in growing, importing and distributing fruit and vegetables across Ireland.

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