Boss faked paperwork to claim back thousands of pounds in VAT in Northampton fraud case, court hears

Gilbert was sentenced in Northampton Crown Court for VAT Fraud.
Gilbert was sentenced in Northampton Crown Court for VAT Fraud.

A Northampton engineering company boss who forged an invoice to fraudulently claim an £18,000 tax rebate has been sentenced.

Nicholas Gilbert, 45, of Obelisk Rise, Kingsthorpe, appeared in Northampton Crown Court yesterday (June 14) after pleading guilty to VAT fraud.

The court heard how he faked an invoice to try and have money repaid to a second company after having a claim rejected by HM Revenue and Customs.

An HMRC spokesman said: “Gilbert tried to cheat the system by forging documents to steal money from our vital public services."

In 2015, Gilbert’s company TR Engineering had an £18,000 VAT rebate rejected by HMRC. Cheques revealed the work had effectively been done for Gilbert’s other company Cornella Ventures, which was not entitled to reclaim the money.

A year later Gilbert tried to claim the £18,000 for Cornella Ventures using the same details as the rejected TR Engineering claim.

Gilbert admitted forging the invoice and said he believed he was entitled to the money for one of his companies.

He was sentenced to a 12-month community order with 120 hours unpaid work.

An HRMC spokesman said: “We encourage anyone with information regarding tax fraud to contact the HMRC Fraud Hotline on 0800 788 887 – open between 8am-8pm, seven days a week, 365 days a year.”