Howard Marcus Derham, a 49 year old tax adviser from the Isle of Wight, has been jailed for 6 months for claiming £52,000 in tax repayments using his clients’ names.
Newport Crown Court heard that Derham had claimed tax repayments on behalf of Self Assessment customers from HMRC but failed to pass the money on. In some cases, his clients were unaware that their tax returns had even been submitted and had no idea they were due a refund until they received notifications from HMRC.
HMRC began an investigation following complaints from Derham’s clients and found that he did not have a lavish lifestyle; he had run into financial difficulties and was using his clients’ money to cover his debts.
Derham pleaded guilty to five of the ten counts of Income Tax fraud he was charged with and asked for another 28 offences to be taken into account.
62 year old Angela Whitehead-Creasey, a business woman from Skegness who ran three food outlets and rented out bed-sits, failed to pay any of the £160,000 tax that was due.
Whitehead-Creasey pleaded guilty to tax evasion and income tax fraud and was sentenced to 12 months prison suspended for two years and 60 hours of unpaid work following a trial at Nottingham Crown Court.
During the eleven years Whitehead-Creasey ran the business, she failed to register for VAT and never paid Income Tax or PAYE for her employees.
17 men have been arrested following an HMRC investigation into an estimated £2m VAT repayment fraud.
Criminal investigators from HMRC, alongside Leicestershire Police, arrested 14 men in Liecester, two in Milton Keynes and one in Newcastle in dawn raids.
All those arrested were interviewed and bailed whilst HMRC enquiries continue.
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