Mystery men `bribed' official


David Shamoon was cleared of the sole charge against him, that of bribing a public official, in December 1996 when the trial judge ordered his aquittal.

A senior tax inspector received thousands of pounds in bribes from wealthy taxpayers he was investigating but their identities remain unknown, the Old Bailey heard yesterday.

Michael Allcock had 11 bank accounts and six credit card accounts, John Black, for the prosecution, said and between 1987 and 1992 he allegedly paid off credit cards totalling pounds 57,807. A further pounds 91,390 was paid into his accounts. The sums were unidentified or unattributable and often paid in pounds 50 notes, the prosecution claimed.

Mr Black said: "We are quite unable to tell you who paid Allcock the various amounts of money. In the course of the evidence you will hear that at varying times Allcock gave explanations as to the source of the money. We say they were all false. The evidence will demonstrate without any doubt that he has no legitimate explanation for that amount of money in his accounts. It is quite clear he has lied on occasions about the source of his money.

"This money has been given to him by tax payers and was received by him corruptly as an inducement or reward for showing favour in relation to tax affairs."

Allcock, 47, of Colchester, Essex, denies 13 charges of corruption between June 1987 and October 1992.

Mr Black said it was not possible to go back through every tax file with which Mr Allcock was associated to find where favourable treatment might have occurred. A number of people from whom Allcock allegedly received gifts had been named in the charges he faced. Two of them appeared with him in court. Hisham Alwan, 56, from Knightsbridge, London, has denied three charges of corruption and David Shamoon, 66, from West Kensington, London, has denied one charge of corruption.

The trial continues.