AFP Left Speechless When Real Source Of Money Was Revealed

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A key player in the alleged Plutus Payroll tax evasion plot, uncovered during one of the country’s most significant white-collar criminal investigations, has pleaded guilty to his role in scandal.

Simon Anquetil, 36, who was one of nine people arrested in 2017, entered guilty pleas in Sydney’s Downing Centre Local Court to charges of conspiring to cause loss and dealing in the proceeds of crime.

A third charge of conspiring to commit an offence was withdrawn.

He will be sentenced on December 6.

When red flags were raised, the company’s accounts were frozen by the ATO due to alleged unpaid taxes and charges of about $40 million.

As part of the investigation, police seized a huge amount of property and assets including vehicles, jewellery, artwork and aircraft.

Plutus was run as a legitimate payroll company which accepted money from clients to process payrolls, but it allegedly subcontracted to tier-two companies which failed to honour their pay-as-you-go (PAYG) commitments to the ATO.

One of Anquetil’s co-accused, Joshua Kitson, was in August sentenced to four years and six months in jail with a non-parole period of three years for his role in the alleged scheme.

Kitson will be eligible for early release in August 2022.

Former Australian Tax Office (ATO) deputy commissioner Michael Cranston was found not guilty of misusing his position to benefit his son following a three-week trial earlier this year.

He had always maintained he had “nothing to hide” when speaking to police and was simply trying to help the ATO.

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