Plasterer gets suspended prison term for falsifying tax returns

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A plasterer who falsified his self assessment tax returns and those of his father to rob the taxpayer of more than £23,000 has been sentenced.

An investigation by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) found that between April 2009 and April 2012, self employed Christopher Green, 26, of Brookside Walk, Leighton Buzzard, made 12 fraudulent claims. He filed his and his father’s returns online, exaggerating the amount of tax they had already paid to inflate their tax repayments.

Stuart Taylor, of HMRC, said: “Green made bogus claims to line his own pockets. He stole more than £23,000 from public finances and would probably have continued his fraud had HMRC officers not stopped him.

“Our message is clear – we will always investigate people suspected of tax fraud. We ask anyone with information about this type of crime to contact the Tax Fraud Hotline on 0800 788 887.”

Green pleaded guilty to evasion of Income Tax and fraud by false representation at Luton Crown Court on December 15 and was sentenced to 15 months in prison, suspended for two years.

He was also ordered to carry out 250 hours of unpaid work.

HMRC will seek to recover the money through civil processes.