Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 18°C

min temp: 13°C

Search

Ipswich: Crooked hotel duo sentenced for fraud

PUBLISHED: 16:23 31 December 2012

Ipswich Crown Court

Ipswich Crown Court

Archant

THE manager and a director of an Ipswich hotel who dishonestly tried to claim £14,500 in VAT repayments have been ordered to do unpaid work in the community.

Colin Frost and Edward Roberts submitted forged invoices for refurbishment work at the former Station Hotel, opposite Ipswich railway station, in a bid to claim the repayments but were found out before any money was repaid, Ipswich Crown Court heard.

Frost, 49, of Burrell Road, Ipswich, and Roberts, 46, of Brickfield Close, Ipswich, had both denied taking steps with a view to the fraudulent evasion of VAT between June 2011 and January 2012.

Last month a jury at Ipswich Crown Court found Frost guilty unanimously but found Roberts guilty by an 11-1 majority verdict.

At their sentencing hearing last week, Frost was given an 18-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, and ordered to do 180 hours unpaid work.

Roberts was given a 12-month community order and ordered to do 180 hours unpaid work.

They were each ordered to pay £1,254 costs.

The court heard that Frost, who was manager and financial director at the hotel in Burrell Road, told investigators he had employed a man called Dave Robinson to carry out improvement work at the hotel and had paid invoices for work carried out at the end of each month.

He said he had only realised there was something wrong with the invoices when a VAT officer noticed they didn’t have a VAT number on them. Frost said Mr Robinson told him he would get the number for him but after that he had been unable to get in touch with him.

When Frost got in touch with the company on the letterhead on the invoices he was told the people who had been doing work at the hotel weren’t anything to do with the company.

Frost said Mr Robinson had brought in an electrical company to help with refurbishment work at the hotel and it was only after he had submitted the electrical company’s invoices to reclaim VAT that he discovered that a VAT number he had been given for the company was for a business in Cornwall which had never done any work in Suffolk.

At the time the defendants were running the Station Hotel, which was leased from Punch Taverns by a company of which Roberts was the sole director and shareholder, and Frost had been the manager and financial director of the hotel.

Officers who investigated the VAT claim discovered they had been given fabricated invoices for work carried out at the hotel and didn’t pay out any money to the defendants.

Roberts told investigators he was dyslexic and had left Frost to fill in forms.

Comments have been disabled on this article.

Police have named a 43-year-old man who died in a crash on the A140 at Mendlesham yesterday as Colin Fisk from Kesgrave.

Just weeks after the Ipswich Park and Ride service was relaunched with a new service run by First Eastern Counties, part of its site at Copdock Mill has been put up for sale.

An accident involving a motorbike and car on the A14 near the Orwell Bridge was resolved with little disruption and no major injuries.

A Suffolk footballer who lost both his legs in a horrific hit and run crash has fulfilled his ambition of walking down the aisle on his wedding day.

The craftsman who created the thatched outdoor classroom at Christchurch which was destroyed in a fire on Monday says it was ‘gutting’ to see his work up in flames.

A 32-year-old man has appeared in court charged with deliberately grabbing a woman’s bottom in Primark.

A woman in her 70s suffered injuries after an “unkempt” man is reported to have shouted and pushed her to the ground in a Suffolk high street.

Children and parents came face-to-face with all manner of creepy crawlies at the Wildlife Family Fun Day at Holywells Park in Ipswich today.

Parents face paying “daunting” travel costs at a Suffolk secondary school after an academy trust “breached” an agreement to subsidise free transport for pupils in surrounding villages, it has been claimed.

A 48-year-old people smuggler who tried to help six illegal immigrants enter Britain through Suffolk has been jailed for four years.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24