A joint operation by HM Customs & Excise and the Inland Revenue has netted an IT consultant who swindled more than £1 million from the tax man.
Colin Clayton of Dunnings Road, East Grinstead, pleaded guilty to two counts of tax cheat and was jailed for nearly four years at Lewes Crown Court on 8 June. He operated a number of IT consultancy and recruitment operations between January 1991 and 1998.
The average life span of his companies was seven months before collapsing into liquidation and leaving the Inland Revenue as the main creditor.
The total owed was in excess of £1 million.
Clayton had acted as a contractor for a number of high profile clients including Hewlett Packard, Hitachi, NCR and Matra Marconi Space UK.
Clayton's most recent companies were Valley Technical Developments, Valleyfield Associates, South East Systems, South East Payments, The Advisors, Elmbridge Computers and Eastergate Consultants. All operated from the same address in East Grinstead.
Clayton was banned from being a company director for 10 years.
A representative for the British Computer Society (BCS) said: 'We are pleased to see the operation ended - it does nothing for the reputation of the IT industry as a whole.'
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