Holloway grocer jailed after setting up fake companies to steal nearly £120,000
PUBLISHED: 12:37 15 November 2018 | UPDATED: 12:37 15 November 2018
A Holloway grocer who set up to two bogus companies and stole nearly £120,000 has been jailed.
Alaina Imponge, 52, of Hartnoll Street, pleaded guilty to VAT fraud at Southwark Crown Court on October 10.
Imponge was ten sentenced to three years in prison at same court on November 12.
HMRC started investigating him after he registered seven companies and made 85 claims between March 20, 2011 and April 28, 2014 – it found the majority of these claims to be fraudulent.
Daren Cooley, assistant director, Fraud Investigation Service, HMRC, said: “Imponge deliberately stole money which should be used to fund our public services, to prop up his grocery business and his personal lifestyle. He pocketed money equivalent to the salary of four new nurses in London.”
HMRC found two of his companies never traded and the others did minimal business, except for A & B Grocery Ltd in Holloway Road which was a legitimate concern.
The companies included a used car business, jewellery shop and a holiday villas firm.
Imponge used fake invoices to hugely inflate the companies’ expenses and claim VAT repayments. Some £125,742.98 was repaid to the seven companies, of which £118,217.98 was fraudulent.