Wembley businessmen jailed for £4million VAT scam

Edward Corr, left, and Arthur Spring (Pic credit: HMRC)

Edward Corr, left, and Arthur Spring (Pic credit: HMRC) - Credit: Archant

The owners of a haulage and heavy plant hire business which cleared waste from the London 2012 Olympics’ site have been jailed for a £4million VAT swindle.

Donald Macleod (Pic credit: HMRC)

Donald Macleod (Pic credit: HMRC) - Credit: Archant

Arthur Spring, 56, of Brewery Close, Edward Corr, 51, of Monks Park, both in Wembley, Donald McLeod, 52, from Hayes and William Gallacher, 47, from Islington, used their four companies to front the scam which involved them hiding millions of pounds in customer VAT payments.

Southwark Crown Court heard £16m had passed through DM Services, DJM Services Ltd, O’Connor Plant and Heavy Trans Ltd between 2004 and 2012, and during that time the men siphoned off £4m in VAT payments which were laundered through false business bank accounts.

In addition to winning the contract for the Olympic Games in Stratford, east London, their companies also had other high profile work including erecting the Christmas lights at Covent Garden.

Spring and Corr, who are both Irish nationals, used a number of pseudonyms to open the bank accounts.

William Gallacher (Pic credit: HMRC)

William Gallacher (Pic credit: HMRC) - Credit: Archant

The gang even used a deceased associate’s account to launder the cash.

When 100 officers from Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs arrested the four In September 2012 they searched 15 domestic and business premises connected to the company and seized, mobile phones, business records and £37,500 in cash.

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Yesterday, all four were sentenced for cheating the public revenue and Spring, Corr and Mcleod were banned from holding a directorship for ten years.

Spring was jailed for three years and nine months, Corr three years and nine months, McLeod was given seven and Gallacher five years and nine months.

John Cooper, from HMRC, said: “This criminal group thought they had developed the perfect plan to steal from the UK taxpayer and launder their profit without detection or having to face the consequences.

They were wrong and are now paying the price.”

The money seized has been forfeited and all four face losing their assets at a confiscation hearing to be held at a later date.