Skip to content
Tax fraud proves fruitless for Derbyshire duo

Press release -

Tax fraud proves fruitless for Derbyshire duo

A director of a Derbyshire ‘fruit and veg’ company and his bookkeeper, who attempted to claim more than £620,000 in VAT by creating fake invoices, have been jailed after an investigation by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

Gregory Palin, 44, conspired with his bookkeeper Paul Marchington, 35, to submit two false VAT repayment claims for his Matlock-based company, Palins Direct Ltd, over a six-month period. However after the submission of the claims, the second for February 2014, HMRC officers became suspicious and began to investigate - this led to the pair being arrested on 31 March, 2014.

Stuart Taylor, Assistant Director, Criminal Investigation, HMRC, said:

“This was a pre-planned, deliberate attempt by this pair, to steal a substantial sum of public money to line their own pockets – which was ultimately driven by greed

“HMRC will pursue people like Palin and Marchington who attempt to defraud the system because tax fraud takes away money that is desperately needed to fund vital public services.

“Anyone with information about people who may be involved in tax fraud can contact the Customs Hotline on 0800 59 5000.”

Following their arrest and during a search of home and business premises, HMRC officers discovered handwritten paperwork and other evidence proving the scam had been planned months in advance. The pair had overinflated company purchases and created false invoices, mainly in relation to a new building on the site, to generate the VAT repayments.

Palin was sentenced to 18 months in prison and Marchington to 12 months in prison when they appeared at Derby Crown Court yesterday, 27 May 2015.

Notes for Editors

  1. Gregory Palin, Sydnope Hill, Two Dales, Matlock, Derbyshire, DOB 17/07/70, pleaded guilty to the submission of fraudulent VAT returns and money laundering when he appeared at Derby Crown Court on Thursday April 30. He is a director of Palins Direct Ltd.
  2. Paul Marchington, Sydnope Hill, Two Dales, Matlock, Derbyshire, DOB 04/01/1980, pleaded guilty to the submission of fraudulent VAT returns when he appeared at Derby Crown Court on Thursday April 30. He is the bookkeeper of Palins Direct Ltd.
  3. Palins Direct Ltd, based on Cromford Hill, trades in the distribution and wholesale of fruit and vegetables, which is subject to zero-rated VAT.
  4. Palins Direct Ltd was initially paid a claim of £115,758, of which £69,373 was fraudulently obtained. Their second repayment, for £551,501 was stopped by HMRC on suspicion of being fraudulent.
  5. Picture: Paul Marchington (L) Greogory Palin (R)
  6. Follow HMRC Press Office on Twitter @HMRCpressoffice
  7. HMRC's Flickr channel: www.flickr.com/hmrcgovuk

Issued by HM Revenue & Customs Press Office

Media enquiries only please contact:

Stevie Roden

Tel: 03000 566399

E-mail: stevie.roden@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk

Or

Joshua Shrimpton Dean

Tel: 03000 554556 / 07469 023 445

E-mail: joshua.shrimpton-dean@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk

Out of hours

Tel: 07860 359544

Website: www.gov.uk/hmrc

Subjects

Tags

Regions


Issued by HM Revenue & Customs Press Office

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) is the UK’s tax authority.

HMRC is responsible for making sure that the money is available to fund the UK’s public services and for helping families and individuals with targeted financial support.

Press contacts

HMRC Press Office

HMRC Press Office

Press contact 03000 585018
HMRC Press Office Out Of Hours Contact

HMRC Press Office Out Of Hours Contact

Press contact 07860 359544

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) is the UK’s tax authority

HMRC is responsible for making sure that the money is available to fund the UK’s public services and for helping families and individuals with targeted financial support.

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC)
100 Parliament St
SW1A 2BQ London