Two Irish men jailed in London over VAT fraud

Court told millions siphoned from business and laundered through other bank accounts

(Left) Kerry-born Arthur Spring (56)  was sentenced to three years and nine months imprisonment and disqualified from being a company director for 10 years. Edward Corr (52), originally from Co Donegal,  was given three years and nine months in jail.

(Left) Kerry-born Arthur Spring (56) was sentenced to three years and nine months imprisonment and disqualified from being a company director for 10 years. Edward Corr (52), originally from Co Donegal, was given three years and nine months in jail.

 

Two Irish men have been jailed in London for a major VAT fraud, which saw millions siphoned from the accounts of a haulage and plant-hire business and laundered through bank accounts, including one that had belonged to a dead colleague.

Arthur Spring (56), who was born in Co Kerry but has an address at Brewery Close, Wembley, Middlesex, was sentenced to three years and nine months imprisonment and disqualified from being a company director for 10 years.

Spring, Southwark Crown Court was told, had used a series of aliases, including the name of “Neil Doherty”, while his fellow Irish partner, Edward Corr (52), originally from Co Donegal, but living at Monks Park, Wembley was given three years and nine months in jail.

The two men, along with Donald McLeod, Dorchester Way in Hayes, and 47-year-old William Gallacher, of Sussex Way, London N19, were found guilty of fraudulently manipulating company to hide customers’ VAT payments.

In September 2012, 100 Revenue and Customs officers arrested the four, searching 15 homes and businesses across London and the south of England and seizing computers, mobile phones and business records, along with £37,500 cash.

The companies at the centre of the fraud — DM Services, DJM Services Ltd, O’Connor Plant and Heavy Trans Ltd — had carried high-profile work including erecting the Christmas lights at Covent Garden and clearing waste from the London 2012 Olympics’ site.

The investigation found that £4 million worth of VAT payments had been siphoned off into false business bank accounts between 2004 and 2012, including one that had belonged to a dead colleague.

Speaking after the convictions, Revenue & Customs investigator, John Cooper said the four men believed they had “the perfect plan” to steal from the UK: “They were wrong and are now paying the price,” he said.