A COMPANY director who was jailed for tax fraud and money laundering has been ordered to pay back thousands of pounds of his ill-gotten gains.

Douglas Brown, from Padgate, was handed four years and one month behind bars in 2018 after using his IT recycling company to wash cash for an organised crime gang who swindled more than £2.6million in VAT repayments.

The 57-year-old himself stole more than £100,000 in VAT repayments.

He has now been ordered to repay £76,439 within the next three months or face an extra year in jail.

Diccon Wood, assistant director for HM Revenue and Customs’ fraud investigation service, said: “Brown has already been jailed but our work doesn’t stop there.

“Now he must pay back the stolen money or face more time behind bars.

“Crime doesn’t pay, which is why Brown faces losing his home and the flat he bought with his ill-gotten gains.”

Brown, of Springfield Avenue, was originally found guilty of fraud and money laundering at Leeds Crown Court in April 2018.

He was brought back before the same court on Tuesday, January 14, for a Proceeds of Crime Act hearing.

The fraudster claimed £99,787 in fraudulent VAT repayments through his company Recycle Technology Ltd, based on Warrington Central Trading Estate in Bewsey, between April 2012 and June 2013.

In 2010, Brown also laundered £10,955 for a gang based in Yorkshire, the West Midlands and Nottinghamshire.

A total of 23 men were jailed for more than 54 years in 2016 for the £2.6million VAT fraud.

Brown posed as a businessman who repaired computer monitors before selling them to customers in Africa.

He and co-defendant Andrew Baddeley, from Stoke-on-Trent, claimed to have spent more than £1million on computer monitors and reclaimed the VAT they had supposedly paid on the recycled goods.

But a HMRC investigation uncovered the scam, with the pair having created a string of fictionalised paperwork.

Mr Wood added: “HMRC will continue to pursue criminals until they repay the money they stole from honest taxpayers.

“We urge anyone with information about tax fraud or money laundering to contact us online, or to call our fraud hotline on 0800 788 887.”