WSTA Logo

Fraud Prevention Unit


The WSTA works with HMRC and other law enforcement agencies to prevent and respond to cases of fraud.  The WSTA is a member of the Joint Alcohol Anti-Fraud Task Force.  The WSTA Fraud Prevention Unit enables its members to share information on fraudulent activity, with a view to preventing it from spreading within the industry.   


wsfpusmallThe WSTA deals with strategic issues and cases relating to duty and VAT avoidance, counterfeiting, wine investment fraud, company hijack and overseas fraud. As well an enabling members of the unit to share information confidentially, the WSTA has also set up a dedicated website: 'Investing in Fine Wines', which gives advice about what to consider when deciding whether to invest in wine.

The fraud prevention unit was set up with support from Operation Sterling and works with several other law enforcement agencies including HMRC, the Food Standards Agency, the Serious fraud Office and Trading Standards.

If you would like to to report alcohol-related fraud confidentially, then you can contact the HMRC hotline on 0800 595 000; or Action Fraud on 0300 123 2024 or e-mail David Richardson on [email protected]

The WSTA has teamed up with Crimestoppers, to run a targeted campaign encouraging the general public to report criminals selling illicit alcohol and undermining legitimate businesses - http://bit.ly/Crimestoppers_AlcoholFraud

If you are in immediate danger you should call 999. 

For further information:

Want to know more? Ask David Richardson
David Richardson

David Richardson - Regulatory & Commercial Affairs Director

David joined the WSTA in March 2014, after a career prosecuting a wide range of cases for HM Customs and Excise, advising on law enforcement policy and working in other regulatory areas. He leads the WSTA’s work on responding to fraud, liaising with law enforcement agencies and brand protection teams.  He sits on the Joint Alcohol and Tobacco Consultative Group and the Joint Customs Consultative Committee. He advises on compliance, particularly the implementation of the Alcohol Wholesaler Registration Scheme and HMRC's change programme. David supports the Logistics Group.

Email: [email protected]
Telephone: 020 7089 3852

Twitter @wstauk

.@WSTA_Miles joins Brexit debate at Vinexpo. Jane Anson asks: So Brexit is happening -what next for the wine trade? https://t.co/AAShQLGHhf


RT @just_drinks: No deal in #Brexit talks "totally unacceptable" warns UK Wine & Spirit Trade Association @wstauk https://t.co/FNgMBJp6L7


WSTA calls for 'fully negotiated divorce settlement' as Brexit talks begin - Imbibe https://t.co/XVmOV5Xt4k

Connect with us