FOUR members of the same family who run a skip business have been hit with a massive compensation bill.

Skip It Containers and Recycling Ltd, based in North Quay Road, Newhaven, owed money to HM Revenue and Customs.

It must pay compensation of £20,460 and was fined £700.

The company was also ordered to pay costs of £200 and a victim surcharge of £70.

Husband and wife John Penfold, 77, and Stephanie Penfold, 69, and their children Mark Penfold, 48, and Rachael Penfold, 44, are the directors.

They all live in Brighton.

Based on their previous trading history, the company was sent a “Notice of Requirement” to protect the public purse against any future tax defaults.

But they failed to pay the security bond of £133,300 and continued to trade, contravening the Value Added Tax Act 1994.

Skip It Containers paid part of the security bond ahead of the sentence handed down at Brighton Magistrates Court on November 7.

Richard Wilkinson, assistant director of the Fraud Investigation Service at HMRC, said: “This family was wrong to think they could get away with trading without following the rules.

“Anyone who is VAT registered, but has a history of failing to meet their tax obligations may be required to pay a security bond as a precautionary measure to protect future tax revenue.

“It is a criminal offence if the bond is not paid and only right that we tackle those businesses who commit this type of crime.”

All four were charged with failure to pay a VAT Notice of Requirement.

John Penfold, 77, lives in Roman Crescent, Brighton, the same address as Stephanie Penfold, aged 69.

Mark Penfold, 48, of Oldfield Crescent, Southwick, and Rachael Penfold, 44, of Croft Avenue, Southwick, were all charged.

The VAT Notice of Requirement was issued on May 26 last year against the directors due to links with a previous non-compliant business. A Notice of Requirement to provide a VAT security warns the trader that if it is not paid, and trading continues, they will face criminal prosecution.