Fraudster jailed for elaborate scam

A MASTER Suffolk con artist has been jailed for an elaborate fraud in which he claimed more than £2.7million in false VAT back payments.

A MASTER Suffolk con artist has been jailed for an elaborate fraud in which he claimed more than £2.7million in false VAT back payments.

Using forged documents and fake identities, Roderick Chisholm Roy, 59, of Glevering Mill, Wickham Market, created bogus firms that appeared to supply badges and buckles to medical and military establishments overseas.

In reality no goods existed and Roy made a fortune by claiming back millions of pounds in VAT on behalf of the companies for false exports.

Roy was arrested at his Suffolk home in July 2006 after HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) started an investigation into one of the companies. He pleaded guilty to four counts of cheating the public revenue (VAT repayment fraud).

Appearing at Croydon Crown Court on Friday he was jailed for a total of three-and-a-half years.

Robert Gray, assistant director HMRC Criminal Investigation Directorate London said: “Tackling VAT fraud is one of HMRC's top priorities.

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“This sentence is the result of a lengthy investigation by officers who work tirelessly and diligently, fighting criminal attacks on the tax system.”

During the investigation HMRC officers used the very latest techniques to catch Roy.

Officers were able to link documents found at his house to all the aliases and state-of-the-art facial mapping technology identified him from photographs on forged documents which he used to open bank accounts and set up companies.

Digital forensics also linked Roy to other incriminating documents including some that he had signed to obtain false VAT repayments.

The documents were subject to fingerprinting and handwriting analysis by the Forensic Science Service.

His Honour Judge Ainley in sentencing Roy said: “You are a Walter Mitty character and central to this fraud, even continuing after part of the fraud was discovered.”

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