Accountant must pay up

1st December 2011'Wakefield Magistrates court.'Pictured: Darren Upton.
1st December 2011'Wakefield Magistrates court.'Pictured: Darren Upton.

A CROOKED accountant must repay more than £130,000 worth of ill-gotten gains or face two more years in jail.

Darren John Upton, 40, who ripped off clients and the tax man to bankroll a life of luxury and his mistress, has now been served with a confiscation order under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Upton, of Woodlesford, is currently serving a six-year prison sentence after being convicted of fraud offences.

He worked as an accountant on Wood Street and had been receiving payments from clients and friends in order to pay their Corporation Tax to the HMRC - only to deposit the money into his own bank accounts.

A confiscation hearing at Leeds Crown Court last week determined the value of Upton’s crime at £496,802. He now has six months to pay the available sum of £132,416 or face a further two years in prison.

Judge Sally Cahill QC ordered the money available should be distributed amongst Upton’s victims.

Det Chief Insp Mick Lawrenson of West Yorkshire Police’s Crime Division said: “Upton was incredibly deceitful, tricking his clients and friends into thinking they were paying their taxes when really they were funding his lavish lifestyle.

“I’m very pleased the judge has ordered the confiscated money to be paid to the victims in this case and hope it brings them some closure following their deception.

“The Proceeds of Crime Act is allowing us to strip criminals of their illegal gains and give something back to local communities.”

See www.westyorkshire.police.uk/whyshouldthey for more.