The wife of a Margate painter and decorator fiddled nearly £19,000 from the taxman after trying to gloss over his income tax returns.
Mum-of-three Amanda Tillings filed hubby Mark’s online tax returns for three years claiming rebates for expenses.
But when an inspector probed the business receipts, he realised they painted a far different picture - of personalised number plates, restaurant bills, a car for a child, road tax for a Mercedes Convertible, food bills and a 46-inch LCD TV.
Tillings, of Tyson Avenue, even claimed for a foreign trip for which her husband had already been reimbursed by a contractor.
Prosecutor Emma King told Canterbury Crown Court told that Tillings had defrauded Inland Revenue of £18,706 during the years 2010-13.
Tillings, who admitted three charges of making false income tax returns, has now offered to repay the money at £500 a month.
She was given a 12-month jail sentence suspended for two years and ordered to do 200 hours of unpaid work for the community.
Ms King said: “In a nutshell, Amanda Tillings made self-assessment income tax returns on line on behalf of her husband Mark which were fraudulent and generated significant repayments to which Mr Tillings was not entitled.
“She submitted numerous receipts on behalf of her husband which could not possibly relate to business expenses. The turnover for each of the three years was also under-declared.”
In 2010-11, Tillings received repayments but when an inspector looked at the receipts he found they were for a personal grooming kit, gardening tools, personalised number plate retention, road tax for a convertible Mercedes and other non-business vehicles, receipts from a fashionable High Street clothing store, health tonic, MOT, garden plants and ladies footwear.
She even claimed for a death notice for Mr Tillings’ late father.
The following year she claimed for a 46-inch LCD TV and accessories, vets bills, meals out and foreign travel which had already been reimbursed.
In 2013, she fraudulently billed the taxman for her weekly shopping bills, mobile phones, meals out, cigarettes, road tax, cinema tickets and the purchase of a car for her daughter
The prosecutor said the refunds were paid into Mr Tillings’ bank account twice a year.
Oliver Kirk, defending said Tillings, who has previous convictions for making false benefit claims and taking a car without consent, was now working as a live-in carer and will not be doing her husband’s tax returns in the future.
He added: “This wasn’t a sophisticated fraud and was easily detected.”