Three members of the same Hull family have been sentenced after committing a £1 million tax fraud involving their sandwich bar businesses.
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) investigators arrested Amy Louise Baker, 27, in January 2012 after discovering she had failed to pay tax for her business, Amy’s Sandwich Bar, since 2006.
During searches of her business premises, HMRC found documents and records relating to a second sandwich business, John’s Sandwich Bar, owned by her father and his partner. John Richard Baker, 62, and Tracey Walmsley, 50, were subsequently arrested by HMRC in August 2012. Investigations into their business revealed they had failed to register for tax since 1995.
Jo Tyler, Assistant Director, Criminal Investigation, HMRC, said:
“These three knew full well they were breaking the law, yet chose to overlook it to get what they wrongly assumed would be easy money. They lived a very comfortable lifestyle, driving performance cars and regularly travelling abroad on holiday, all at the expense of the taxpayer,
“There are no excuses for this type of criminal activity, as paying tax is not an option – it is a legal and moral obligation. This family manipulated a system that exists for the benefit of legitimate traders and honest taxpayers and they are now paying the price.
John Baker was jailed for two years for his role in the fraud at Hull Crown Court yesterday after HHJ Mettyear said he had been at the forefront on a long standing deliberate fraud in which his family had become involved.