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Plumber jailed for tax fraud

A plumber in the West Midlands has been jailed for 12 months for evading £91,000 of income tax and national insurance during 10 years of trading as a self-employed plumber.


The 53 year old man was arrested in September 2011 as a result of an investigation by HM Revenue and Customs.

Officials who searched his property found thousands of pounds in cash hidden away in his home.

He was sentenced to 12 months in prison after pleading guilty to charges of Evasion of Income Tax, contrary to the Taxes Management Act 1970.

Nine more plumbers have been arrested and investigations are ongoing.

Clamp down on tax evasion

HMRC targeted plumbers in a special campaign in 2011. Other such disclosure campaigns have focused on offshore investments, medical professionals, private tutors and coaches, companies not paying VAT, electricians and online marketplace traders.

More than £500m has been raised from these campaigns and more than £110m from follow-up activity by HMRC.

Adrian Farley, Assistant Director of Criminal Investigation for HMRC, said: “Today’s sentencing is a result of our drive to clamp down on tax evasion committed specifically by plumbers, gas fitters, heating engineers, electricians and others who fail to declare their earnings and pay the right tax.

“Tax evasion deprives our country of vital resources and gives tax cheats an unfair advantage over their business competitors so we will not hesitate to investigate those we suspect of evading tax. I would ask anyone with information about people who may be involved in tax evasion to contact the Tax Evasion Hotline on 0800 788 887.”

Squirreling money

On sentencing, His Honour Judge Challinor, said: “You were squirreling the money away, it was based on greed. Those tempted to avoid paying income tax must be deterred.”

For further information visit the HMRC website.

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