The notorious case of the Jerseyman sought down under to face criminal proceedings for allegedly masterminding the biggest tax fraud in Australian history, involving clients such as Paul ‘Crocodile Dundee’ Hogan, entered a new chapter this week when he indicated he would fight extradition.
Prosecutors in Australia are determined to see Philip Jepson Egglishaw, 63, returned to their jurisdiction to face charges for allegedly setting up an A$300m (£182m, $237m, €205m) tax evasion network.
Project Wickenby, which dates back more than a decade, saw Egglishaw as a key person of interest in its investigation in the alleged scam, which led to 46 convictions, including well-known music promoter Glenn Wheatley jailed, and saw a decade-long dispute between the Australian Tax Office and Hogan, together with his business partner John Cornell.
Egglishaw left Australia in 2004, and has been living primarily in Monaco, where he has a villa, and France to play golf, with trips to Geneva, where he has an apartment, and Italy, where he was arrested on May 2.
Luxury £1,500-a-night hotel
Thanks to the Schengen Agreement, Egglishaw was able to cross borders without producing his passport. Had he done so, border authorities would have realised that there was an Interpol Red Notice – a warrant for his arrest. His luck ran out in May when he and his partner British citizen Sheila Jordan, 52, checked in to the luxury £1,500-a-night Hotel Villa d’Este on the banks of Lake Como.
Italian law requires that passport details for hotel guests be uploaded to the police database. That night, when the hotel did so, Egglishaw was flagged up as subject to the Interpol Red Notice, and four police arrived in two marked cars the following day to arrest him.
Since then, he has been denied bail and held at the Case Circondariale at Bassone prison in Como.
At a private hearing this week in the Milan District Court, Mr Egglishaw’s lawyer told Australia’s News Corp that his client disputed the charges against him and that the ‘statute of limitation’ – the period in which he could be extradited to Australia – had passed. Mr Egglishaw told the court he would resist the extradition application