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London Fields Brewery owner in fraud charge

The owner of London Fields Brewery has been charged with a suspected £1 million fraud, while the Hackney brewery has been put up for sale.

Jules Whiteway-Wilkinson

Jules Whiteway-Wilkinson, 43, set up the London Fields Brewery in 2011.

It has now been put up for sale after it emerged he had been charged with a suspected £1 million fraud by the HMRC after an investigation by tax officials.

He faces three counts of cheating the public revenue in respect of VAT, national insurance and student loan contributions, and one count of fraudulently evading income tax, the Evening Standard reports.

The prosecution follows a raid on his brewery by HM Revenue and Customs in 2014 and an investigation into his accounts.

Announcing the decision to prosecute, HMRC said Mr Whiteway-Wilkinson had been “charged in connection with a suspected VAT, tax and student loan fraud of more than £1,000,000”.

“He was charged with three counts of cheating the public revenue between December 31 2011 to August 7 2014 in respect of VAT, PAYE/NIC and student loan contributions, and one further count of being knowingly concerned in the fraudulent evasion of income tax”, a statement added.

Mr Whiteway-Wilkinson has denied the charges and the case will appear in court in May.

Estate agent Davis Coffer Lyons confirmed today that it has been instructed to sell the craft brewery which is located in five arches on Walburton Street in Hackney and comprises the London Fields Brewery; The Brewhouse Venue; and Taproom.

“London Fields Brewery is a developing business with a strong turnover and unique business model in the craft beer industry due to onsite 500 capacity venue”, said Paul Tallentyre, executive director of pubs and bars at Davis Coffer Lyons.

“There is a professional management team in place, and the business is ideally poised to fulfil currently untapped export demand for high quality craft beer products, with enquiries already received from all over the world.”

Offers are being invited for the business in its entirety or a potential share sale or joint venture for the right partners.

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