Former BHS owner Dominic Chappell jailed for tax evasion

5 November 2020, 16:45 | Updated: 5 November 2020, 16:48

Former BHS owner Dominic Chappell arrives at Southwark Crown Court in London
Former BHS owner Dominic Chappell arrives at Southwark Crown Court in London. Picture: PA

By Megan White

Former BHS owner Dominic Chappell has been jailed for six years for evading tax on £2.2 million of income he received from his £1 deal to buy the failed high street chain.

He was found guilty of dishonestly evading his liability to pay more than half a million in VAT, corporation tax and income tax between January 2014 and September 2016.

The 53-year-old had denied the three charges of cheating the public revenue related to his bankrupt finance company Swiss Rock Limited, but a jury at Southwark Crown Court found him guilty after a trial which lasted almost four weeks.

Prosecutors say he failed to pay around £350,000 in VAT, some £164,000 in corporation tax and approximately £86,000 in income tax.

Mr Justice Bryan gave the total figure on taxes Chappell had failed to pay as £583,739.20.

Addressing him as he stood in the dock, Mr Justice Bryan said Chappell has engaged in a "long and consistent course of conduct designed to cheat the revenue".

He told him his offending was "an egregious example" of the offence, adding that "only an immediate custodial sentence is appropriate".

Before jailing him for six years on each count, to run concurrently, he said: "You are not of positive good character. Your offending occurs against a backdrop of successive bankruptcies."