A tech chief who endangered Royal Navy personnel by selling inappropriate equipment to the Ministry of Defense (MoD) was arrested.
Carl Tiltman, 56, used fake test results to lie about the features of the £ 1.4 million underwater scanning technology designed by Dorset-based Subsea Asset Location Technologies (SALT).
He had worked at the Ministry of Defense before becoming CEO of the company and managed to trick his former employer into ordering specialized sonar imaging devices and security equipment.
Tiltman cited false test results during his sales pitch, and the Southwark Crown Court heard how navy personnel were subsequently put at risk during "completely futile" live training operations with the new kit.
The judge of the case, Christoper Hehir, said that Tiltman's fraud "caused or contributed to very substantial financial loss and damage … as well as causing some risk to life and service personnel."
The main technology involved was called Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR), which uses lasers to detect and scan items such as ships and underwater pipes to produce images for analysis.
Tiltman's complaints during his presentations, which began in May 2017, led to Navy training sessions involving heavy machines with potentially sight-impairing lasers.
One case saw the businessman convince someone identified only as Soldier A that he had installed a remote control system on the scanner, but later found that it did not work as advertised.
Soldier A realized that he needed to get back in the water to turn the scanner on and off – and that Tiltman seemed to have sabotaged the battery to cover up his fraud.
Eventually, questions began to be asked after the Ministry of Defense was notified by a third party in January 2018, and several charges were brought against Tiltman, who worked for the Ministry of Defense in the 1980s.
He was accused of fraud for position abuse, related to lies told to his now liquidated aviation technology company he was working on to help locate wreckage.
He admitted to deceiving investors and directors of his company by fabricating continued interest from companies like Airbus, months after the end of discussions about buying the technology – called SkyBell.
Tiltman of Hawkchurch, Devon was informed by the judge that his offense was "very serious" and that he had violated the trust placed in him "by the company and the service personnel."
He was sentenced to two years for fraud for position abuse and three years and four months for fraudulent misrepresentation, which will be served simultaneously.