Melvyn Careswell, 49, of Epsom set up MPC Heating & Plumbing and traded as a self-employed plumber without ever registering his earnings with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).
Investigators discovered that over a five-year period he evaded around £50,000 of income tax.
Careswell was arrested on 5 August 2011. He pleaded guilty to the offence and was sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment at Kingston Crown Court on Friday 20 July 2012.
Confiscation proceedings are underway.
HMRC assistant director Chris Martin said: “Careswell stole from UK taxpayers by failing to pay tax due on his earnings and now he must face the consequences of his actions in jail. HMRC is clamping down on plumbers and those in other trades who attempt to commit tax evasion, and the sentence given to Careswell will act as a deterrent.”
This sentencing follows an HMRC clampdown on plumbers, gas fitters and heating engineers who failed to take advantage of the opportunity offered during last year’s Plumbers Tax Safe Plan (PTSP), to put their tax affairs in order on the best possible terms. Those who came forward have already paid more than £4m in outstanding tax.
HMRC director of risk and intelligence services Mike Wells said: “We want people targeted by any HMRC campaign to come forward and use the opportunity to put the record straight and pay any tax due on the best possible terms. It really is better for people who owe tax to come to HMRC, before we come and find you.”