Fraudulant HMRC Payments Jail Man
A man who set up fraudulent payments worth £2.9m to HMRC instead and then transferred the money to himself has been jailed for more than 4 years.
Simon Olver spent the stolen money on deposits for sports cars, watches, jewellery and flights as well as making an offer on a house for £2.6m.
Following a referral to the Fraud Squad from Credit Industriel et Commercial Bank, where Olver worked as head of finance, accounting, reporting and tax, an investigation was launched.
Olver had set up two payment requests, supposedly to pay an outstanding corporation tax bill for 2017 to HMRC. Olver however had entered his own bank details and named his account ‘HMRC Cumbernauld’.
Once the payment had been authorised, Olver sent a payment request for the amount to be processed and the funds of £479,044 released. Within weeks, he submitted another payment request for £2,477,122, again under the premise that it was to settle an outstanding bill from HMRC.
Olver’s employer was tipped off about these payments directly by Olver’s bank, who were suspicious of the two large payments. Olver was arrested the same day from his place of work.
On his arrest it was found that Olver had copied his manager’s signature from the previous fraudulent payment requests and was planning to submit a third worth £1,550,000.
When questioned Olver stated he had been struggling with debts and the payments a way to sort out his money problems, however it was uncovered that he had already spent almost £238,000 on high end luxury goods.
Olver was sentenced to four and a half years in prison following a guilty plea to two counts of fraud by abuse of position and once count of creating articles for use in fraud.
Judge Gregory Perrins told the bank boss:
“Had you been successful that would have taken the amount to around £4.5m. Although you told the police you were in debt the evidence shows went on an extravagant spending spree.
“This was a case of significant dishonesty and gross breach of trust, motivated only by pure greed. You made an offer on a house showing the balance on your phone, as if you could pay outright in cash.
“You had a watch from Harrods, put deposits on both a McClaren and an Aston Martin in the region of £400,000. You bought expensive items of jewellery including a pendant, a £15,000 ring, a £19,000 diamond.
“When police searched your house found a significant quantity of goods with the labels still attached, this was a mammoth spending spree, there were clothes alone worth £10,000.”
Following his jailing, Detective Constable Richard Cole, who led the investigation for the City of London Police’s Fraud Squad, said:
“Olver betrayed the trust of his employer and used his position to steal nearly £3 million pounds.
“Despite claiming in his interview that he needed the money for debt payments, it’s evident that he also used it to enjoy a luxury lifestyle, purchasing expensive items such as watches and jewellery.
“He must now pay the price for his actions, both with the sentence handed down by the court, but also with the loss of his job and reputation.”
Sarah Place of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) added:
“Simon Olver seriously abused his position of trust which impacted on his employers, his colleagues and those close to him. Olver used the money he took to spend lavishly on expensive cars, holidays and designer jewellery.
“Faced with a wealth of evidence, which showed he had requested the transfer of company money to his own bank account under false pretences, he had to admit his wrongdoing.
“In addition to the sentence of four and a half years imprisonment imposed on him, the CPS will now take steps to recover the monies fraudulently taken through Mr Olver’s dishonest actions.”