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A Rayleigh butcher has been jailed for 52 days for non-payment of business rates.
Jamie Armstrong of Runwell Gardens, Wickford, was sentenced on September 28 at Southend Magistrates Court in relation to unpaid business rates for Kings of Meat, High Street, Rayleigh.
Mr Armstrong originally appeared in court on December 19 2019 in relation to unpaid Business Rates amounting to £15,280.68 for the period February 1 2019, to March 31, 2020.
The magistrates found culpable neglect on his part and imposed a 60-day suspended prison sentence, ordering him to pay £2,000 in December 2019 and £13,280.68 in January 2020.
Armstrong failed to pay, Magistrates gave him four separate occasions to pay these arrears but he explained that due to a loss in trade during COVID he could not, despite the payments in question relating to a pre-lockdown period.
Councillor Simon Smith, Portfolio Holder for Financial services said: “As a council we do not relish having to prosecute anyone for non-payment of Business Rates, especially through this difficult time with COVID, and we are continuing to work with businesses who are struggling to pay.
However, it is important that we take action wherever it is necessary, in the interests of all our law-abiding business owners who do meet their payments”.
If you are having difficulty paying your business rates, call the recovery team on 01702 318019 or email revenues&[email protected]