THE director of a Scunthorpe electrical contracting company, who faked invoices to help steal more than £147,000 in tax, has been jailed.
Richard Hotchin, 39, and the sole director of Qube Specialist Maintenance Solutions Ltd, inflated the value of his purchases and drew up false invoices for equipment he had never bought.
An HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) investigation found Hotchin, who lives in Gainsborough, made up figures on his VAT returns between April 2012 and March 2014 to keep hold of the tax he should have paid HMRC.
Richard Young, assistant director, fraud investigation service, HMRC, said: “Hotchin manipulated the accounts of his business and drew up fraudulent invoices to steal taxpayers’ money to which he was not entitled. This is money that should have been funding vital public services, and his scam created an uneven playing field for his honest competitors.
“HMRC takes tax fraud extremely seriously, and will take action where we find it to ensure no one is beyond our reach. I urge anyone with information about individuals or businesses involved in tax fraud to call our 24-hour hotline on 0800 59 5000.”
Hotchin pleaded guilty to cheating the public revenue at Lincoln Crown Court on 22 June 2016. He was sentenced to 21 months in prison at the same court yesterday (Monday 1 August 2016).
Confiscation proceedings are underway to recoup the proceeds of his crime.
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