Australian Tax Officer Deputy Commissioner Michael Cranston and has son Adam Cranston have been charged in connection with what is alleged to be one of the biggest white collar crimes in Australian history.
Federal Police and ATO officers have conducted dozens of raids across Sydney yesterday with more continuing today.
Federal Police arresting Adam Cranston in Bondi
So far nine people have been arrested and charged with significant assets seized including:
- At least $15m in cash being held in personal and business accounts
- 25 luxury, vintage and racing motor vehicles
- 18 residential properties
- 12 motorbikes
- More than 100 bank and share trading accounts
- Two aircraft
- Firearms, jewellery, art work, vintage wines
- At least $1million in a safety deposit box
The charges range from conspiracy to defraud the Commonwealth, dealing with proceeds of crime, a demanding money by menace.
Michael Cranston is said to have been in shock when he was confronted by Federal Police officers yesterday.
Adam Cranston (left) with his wife Elizabeth (right)
He's not accused of being part of the syndicate, but instead of misusing his position in the ATO to access audit information for his 30 year old son who is accused with allegedly masterminding the elaborate scheme.
Basically, the younger Cranston and the eight others are accused of funnelling payroll cash through a web of companies and siphoning off tens of millions of dollars.
The ongoing investigation has also seen at least two other ATO staff suspended without pay accused of accessing information from the computer system.
Adam Cranston is due to face court today with his father scheduled to front Downing Central Local Court on June 13.