Man who evaded excise duty on almost 150k cigarettes and had two false passports given a suspended sentence
An Uzbek man who evaded excise duty on almost 150,000 cigarettes and had two false passports to avoid paying higher tax has been given a suspended sentence.
Vladislav Kan (35) told gardai he had two false Czech passports so he could get different PPS numbers for different work and avoid paying higher income tax. He claimed he was trying to save money for a computer science degree.
Judge Desmond Hogan imposed a three year term which he suspended in full for three years. He also ordered Kan to pay €5000 in compensation to the Revenue.
Kan, of Riverstown House, Spencer Dock, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to possessing tobacco products with no tax stamp in his car and at his address on September 22, 2012. He also pleaded guilty to possessing a false Czech driving license and two fake passports on the same date. He has no previous convictions.
Garda Gavin Higgins said that he initially stopped and searched Kan in his car in the Rathmines area because it looked like he was buying or selling drugs. The garda found a small amount of cannabis in Kan’s pocket and 8,000 cigarettes in his car boot.
He told Pieter Le Vert BL, prosecuting, that Kan admitted he had more cigarettes at his home. During a search Gda Higgins found the remaining 132,340 cigarettes, the fake documents, a diary with cigarette orders and 12 grams of cannabis.
Revenue lost €59,010 in excise duty and VAT, but had put a plan together for Kan to pay back €15,000. The garda added that Kan has paid €10,000 back to date.
He agreed with David Staunton BL, defending, that Kan, who is married to an EU national and has been in Ireland for 11 years, was fully co-operative with gardaí.
He agreed that Kan has an impressive employment history, but lost a job at Dunnes Stores because Revenue rang there about the investigation.
Mr Staunton said that his client’s motivation for the offences was “well intended” and that Kan had wished to get money to “further himself”.
He asked Judge Hogan to take into account his client’s early plea, full admissions and that he will now have a stigma attached to him.
Mr Le Vert told the Judge that the penalties for such tax offences can be a €12,695 fine and/or five years in prison and a five year jail term for possessing false instruments.
Judge Hogan said he didn’t accept that Kan was “an innocent abroad”. He noted that Kan had been dipping his hand into the public purse and that his offending was “not the way to go about furthering his education.”