IT manager sentenced for VAT fraud
The former director of an eco-electrical manufacturing company has been sentenced, alongside the company’s IT manager for a £220,000 VAT fraud.
Mym Simcock, 64, and her cousin Gordon Matchett, 71, who ran the company’s IT hub, used false invoices to submit inflated VAT repayment claims between Jan 2011 and Dec 2012.
They also duplicated claims and manipulated the VAT records of their company, Freepower Europe Limited, latterly known as Waste2energy Limited, found HMRC after investigating.
As the firms’ names imply, the business specialised in the manufacture and sale of devices that turned waste heat from machinery into free electricity, and had traded legitimately.
But a Revenue VAT compliance officer became suspicious about the legitimacy of VAT claims submitted by the company for February, August and November 2011.
Simock and Matchett, who lived together in the same house, were arrested in Jan 2013, when laptops belonging to the pair were seized and found to contain copies of bogus invoices.
Although they initially pleaded not guilty 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 received a two-year suspended sentence and a five- year ban from being a director, while Matchett was sentenced to one year in prison (suspended for two years), and was disqualified from company directorships for two years. HM Revenue & Customs said it would seek to recover the proceeds of the crime.
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