A businessman who lied about his income and pocketed VAT he had charged his clients stole more than £67,000 from the public purse through tax fraud, a court heard.
William Overton's firm was not VAT-registered but he charged his customers VAT on invoices. His firm, UK Beams, dealt in heating systems and held the intellectual property for his designs.
The 45-year-old, of Mercia Marina, Willington, deliberately hid the 25 per cent commission he was receiving on sales of a radium panel designed by him and sold by another company.
He should have paid £40,142 in income tax and national insurance on the extra income.
The former Repton resident also pocketed £27,115 VAT which he charged his customers. He issued invoices on behalf of UK Beams using an old VAT number from his previous company, UK Beams Ltd. He submitted more than 75 false claims to his clients.
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) uncovered the frauds after reviewing records and discovering he had been charging VAT on invoices, even though his firm was not VAT registered.
Richard Young, assistant director from the fraud investigation service at HMRC, said: "Overton was stealing from the public purse. This was a deliberate attempt to steal money to line his own pockets.
"HMRC will pursue people like Overton who attempt to defraud the system and take money away from our vital public services.
"Anyone with information about people who may be involved in tax fraud can contact our Fraud Hotline on 0800 788 887."
Overton said he did not know he was still charging VAT, despite having updated his invoices to reflect his new address and bank details.
He was given a two-year prison sentence, suspended for two years, and 100 hours' unpaid work, when he appeared at Stafford Crown Court.
He had previously pleaded guilty to one count of being knowingly concerned in the fraudulent evasion of income tax and national insurance contributions, and also to one count of intent to make a gain for himself or another, or with intent to cause loss to another.