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Wiltshire pair sentenced for VAT fraud

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Wiltshire pair sentenced for VAT fraud

Wiltshire pair sentenced for VAT fraud

The former director of an eco-electrical manufacturing company has been sentenced, alongside the company’s Finance and IT Manager, for a £220,000 VAT fraud following an investigation by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

Miriam (Mym) Simcock, 64, and Gordon Matchett, 71, of Salisbury, Wiltshire, used false invoices to submit inflated VAT repayment claims between 1 January 2011 and 31 December 2012. They also duplicated claims and manipulated their companies’ VAT records.

HMRC’s criminal investigation began after a VAT compliance officer became suspicious about the legitimacy of VAT claims submitted by the company for February, August and November 2011. Following the arrests in January 2013, officers seized laptop computers and files which contained copies of false invoices from the pair’s home. Other business records were also analysed.

Simcock and Matchett pleaded not guilty at Winchester Crown Court on 21 July 2014 to conspiring to Cheat the Public Revenue. They both changed their pleas to guilty on the first day of their trial at Salisbury Crown Court. Simcock on both counts and Matchett in relation to Freepower Europe Limited. Simcock was sentenced to two years in prison, suspended for two years, and disqualified as a director for five years by His Honour Judge Barnett at Salisbury Crown Court today, 17 April. Matchett was sentenced to one year in prison, suspended for two years, and disqualified from being a director for two years.

The VAT registered businesses had legitimately traded in the manufacture and sale of devices that turned waste heat from machinery into free electricity.

HMRC will seek to recover the proceeds of this crime.

Notes for editors

1.Miriam Erskine Paula SIMCOCK (DOB 01/01/51), of Wilton Road, Burcombe, Salisbury, Wiltshire. Company director of TTL Dynamics Limited (dormant since 2003) trading from Old Priory, Burcombe, Freepower Europe Limited (latterly known as Waste2energy Limited and Freepower Limited (insolvent in 2012), traded from West Portway Industrial Estate, Andover, Hampshire.

2.Gordon Harvey MATCHETT (DOB 05/03/44), also of Wilton Road, Burcombe, Salisbury, Wiltshire. Director of Freepower Europe Limited and IT & Finance Manager of Freepower Limited.

3.Simcock and Matchett are cousins.

4.The pair were arrested by HMRC officers on 17 January 2013 and jointly charged on 12 November 2013 with Conspiracy to Cheat the Public Revenue.

5.They changed their pleas to guilty at Salisbury Crown Court on 23 February 2015.

6.Photos are available on HMRC’s Flickr channel www.flickr.com/hmrcgovuk

7.Any companies with similar names have no connection to this fraud.

8.Follow HMRC’s press office on Twitter @HMRCpressoffice

Issued by HM Revenue & Customs Press Office

Press enquiries only please contact:

Michelle Coulthard

Tel: 03000 559795

Email: michelle.coulthard@hmrc.gsi.gov.uk

Out of hours

Tel: 07860 359544

Website www.gov.uk/hmrc

Subjects

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

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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