A PLASTERER who stole from taxpayers by making fraudulent tax claims has been jailed.

Craig Palin, aged 36, admitted making fraudulent tax declarations resulting in him receiving a repayment of £10,020, which he was not entitled to.

The crimes came to light following an HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) probe.

A second repayment of £3,700 was due to go to Palin, but it was held back by HMRC once the frauds were discovered. He appeared at Manchester and Salford Magistrates Court on Monday, where he admitted 11 counts of submitting fraudulent declarations of tax in relation to repayments.

Palin, of Brookland Avenue, Farnworth, was jailed by magistrates for 11 weeks — 10 weeks for the crimes and one week for a bail offence.

He was also ordered to pay £160 costs.

Sandra Smith, assistant director of criminal investigation for HMRC, said: “Palin stole from UK taxpayers. He falsely claimed tax repayments by making 11 fraudulent changes to his Self Assessment tax returns.

“Anyone attempting to commit this type of crime should be aware that HMRC is determined to pursue and bring fraudsters .

“The message is clear — if you choose to defraud the tax system you face the possibility of a criminal prosecution.”