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Carpenter jailed for tax fraud

A carpenter from Portsmouth who tried to claim £26,000 in fraudulent Income Tax refunds has been jailed after an investigation by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

Oliver Ford, 28, submitted multiple Self Assessment tax returns to claim tax rebates but lied about his turnover, deductions and expenses. Over £19,000 was refunded by HMRC.

On 15th July 2013 Ford pleaded guilty to 15 offences contrary to Sections 1 and 2 of the Fraud Act 2006. Investigators found that Ford had no books or records to support the claims.

The illegal repayment claims amounting to £26,405.66 were for June 2008 to November 2012. £19,469.96 was actually paid to him. Other payments were withheld as part of the HMRC investigation.

At sentencing the judge commented that if there had been a jury trial he would have received a 15 month prison sentence. As he had entered an early guilty plea that sentence was reduced by a third to ten months. Of that he was ordered to serve five months in prison with the remaining five months to be suspended.

HMRC has advised that it will seek to recover the fraudulent payments through the confiscation process.

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