Three tax officials jailed over VAT scam

Three tax inspectors from Thessaloniki have been jailed for between five and 10 years for their part in a scam that is thought to have cost taxpayers about 30 million euros.

The officials were found guilty of colluding with several companies in northern Greece to accept forged invoices and to return value added tax (VAT) to them ? payments that should never have been made.

The companies involved were set up as fronts, purporting to export goods so they could then claim back VAT payments.

The tax officials jailed include the former head of the VAT department at Thessaloniki?s main tax office.

An accountant has also been jailed for four years.