Gift shop owner is jailed

Manchester Evening News - - NEWS -

THE owner of a string of gift shops has been jailed for dodg­ing £75,000 in VAT.

Claire Marie Greenall, 41, ran three stores in the north west, in­clud­ing one in Wi­gan, all called The Per­sonal Touch. They sold fash­ion ac­ces­sories and gifts.

But HM Rev­enue and Cus­toms found Greenall de­lib­er­ately hid sales to evade pay­ing VAT be­tween 2011 and 2015, de­spite mak­ing sales worth £686,203.

In­ves­ti­ga­tors re­vealed how Greenall, owner of a shop in The Gal­leries shop­ping com­plex in Wi­gan as well as oth­ers in Cum­bria and Black­burn, had sup­pressed her sales.

A foren­sic ac­coun­tant es­tab­lished the scale of the fraud with an ex­am­i­na­tion of her busi­ness records.

Greenall, of Rosedale Av­enue in Black­pool, pleaded guilty to four VAT fraud of­fences. She was jailed for two years and three months at Pre­ston Crown Court yes­ter­day.

San­dra Smith, of HMRC, said: “Evad­ing tax is an in­sult to hon­est tax­pay­ers.”

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