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Woman ordered to pay back $68,000

14:20 Thu May 3 2012

A south Auckland woman has been ordered to pay back $68,000 she falsely claimed from the tax department.

Loata Taufua Patolo was also sentenced to seven months' home detention.

Patolo had earlier pleaded guilty in Manukau District Court to falsely claiming refunds from Inland Revenue of just over $68,000 between 2006 and 2011 and attempting to claim a further $31,000.

Inland Revenue group manager assurance Patrick Goggin said Patolo received Working for Families Tax Credits for her three children, even though they had all left the country in early 2007 and were still overseas.

"She also applied for tax credits for an additional child in her care, to which she was not entitled, and filed using other people's names and false details."

Patolo also claimed donation tax credits, both in her own name and her partner's name, along with false Paid Parental Leave credits using forged medical certificates and by telling Inland Revenue that she was self-employed.

"This was a deliberate and concerted effort to obtain money from Inland Revenue. Patolo clearly understood the tax rules, because not only did she file a number of false claims, but she also filed in three different tax types."

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