Howard Marcus Derham worked as a tax advisor and agent for twenty years claiming tax repayments on behalf of Self Assessment customers.
He specialised in the construction sector under the name “Axe the Tax”.
Newport Crown Court heard from HM Revenue & Customs that he failed to pass the money on.
In some cases his clients were unaware that their tax returns had been submitted and had no idea they were due a refund until they received notification from HMRC.
John Cooper, HMRC Assistant Director Criminal Investigation, said: “Hardworking taxpayers trusted Derham with their finances.
“Sadly he abused his reputation and position to commit tax fraud, stealing from clients and the wider taxpaying public.
HMRC’s criminal investigation started after complaints were received from some of his clients.
Derham pleaded guilty to five of the ten counts of Income Tax fraud he was charged with and asked for another 28 offences to be taken into consideration.
He was jailed for six months.
His Honour Judge Ralls QC said: “This was a systematic dishonest fraud affecting a large number of individuals who entrusted you to obtain refunds due to them.”
The court heard that after leaving university Derham worked for the Inland Revenue in Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight. He resigned in 1992 to set up his own business.