Barrowman in Spanish court to face tax claims
Michelle Mone’s husband Doug Barrowman appeared in a Spanish court today to face claims he ‘took part in a £5.5million corporate tax evasion scam’.
According to the Daily Mail, the 58-year-old did not appear to be accompanied by his wife at the court in Santander for the opening day of the five-day trial. If convicted of the charges he could face five and a half years in jail.
Mr Barrowman is accused in Spain of benefiting – along with six co-accused Britons – from an allegedly fraudulent €6.3m invoice.
Prosecutors say it was created to evade tax and take millions of pounds out of Spanish business B3 Cable Solutions via a UK company Axis Ventura in July 2008. B3 went bankrupt four years later, leading to 200 job losses at a cable factory near Santander.
Mr Barrowman and his fellow defendants deny the charges, while an earlier civil court case cleared him and his partners of any administrative wrongdoing.
His defence claims he was neither a shareholder nor a director of Axis at the time the invoice was created and paid.
According to the indictment, Mr Barrowman ceased his connection to Axis in March 18, 2008, four months before the invoice was paid and later partly used to offset B3’s corporation tax bill by €1.6million.
Separately, Mr Barrowman and Baroness Mone are being investigated by Britain’s National Crime Agency for alleged fraud, over the award of more than £200million in VIP lane Covid-19 contracts in 2020 to PPE Medpro – a firm with which they were linked.