Bogus financial adviser jailed for £1.9m tax fraud

A bogus financial adviser who fraudulently manipulated his “clients’” pension funds to avoid paying tax of over £1.9m has been jailed for three years.

Colin Pearson, aged 47, who previously worked for the Food Standards Agency, claimed to be a financial adviser and persuaded his “clients” to release over £3.4m from their pension funds.

Pearson completed UK pension transfer forms on behalf of his clients to falsely claim that the funds were going abroad to avoid paying tax due on the pension withdrawals. Pearson persuaded over thirty UK pension holders to make unauthorised transfers.

HM Revenue & Customs investigators arrested Colin Pearson in September 2009, he pleaded guilty to cheating the public purse at an earlier court hearing. He was sentenced at Hull Crown Court.

Pearson’s fraud involved releasing various individual’s pension funds over the period February 2008 to October 2009. The value of the funds released was estimated as £3.4m of which just below £3m  was returned to “clients”. He also released his own pensions, valued at £74,619, in total approximately £377,608 was taken as commission.