Christopher Humphrey, 53, manipulated till records so lower daily takings were recorded, and provided inaccurate information to his accountants. He also lied about the amount of stock purchased when he was landlord of The Tudor Tavern public house in East Preston - to try and hide the amount he was actually selling.
Chris Gill, Assistant Director, Fraud Investigation Service, HMRC, said:
“Christopher Humphrey lied about his true takings to pay less tax, which gave him an unfair advantage over business competitors. Our message is clear - it is simply not acceptable to steal from the tax system and honest UK taxpayers.
“HMRC will continue to pursue those criminals who attack the tax system and we ask anyone with information about suspected tax fraud to contact our Fraud Hotline on 0800 788 887.”
The fraud, which took place between August 2011 and June 2015, was uncovered by HMRC’s Cash Taskforce and referred for criminal investigation. Enquiries revealed Humphrey had evaded £53,464 in VAT and £31,128 of Corporation Tax.
Christopher Humphrey pleaded guilty on 28 November 2017 at Wood Green Crown Court. He was jailed for 18 months at the same court on 14 December 2017.
Upon sentencing Humphrey, His Honour Judge Lucas QC, said:
“You ran a public house in a manner I can only describe as wholly fraudulent. It is clear that not only were you cheating the public revenue but also deceiving your employers by purchasing stock elsewhere.”