Vincent McKee, 54, was sentenced at Coventry Crown Court yesterday after being convicted of 25 counts of fraud by a jury after a six-week trial.
The court heard that McKee, who ran a student tuition firm in Coventry, stole about £23,000 from clients and their families by using their bank card details between October 2009 and January 2011.
Sentencing McKee, who stood for the Liberal Democrats in Coventry North West in 2010, Judge Peter Carr said: “You were in charge of a business which offered tuition to people who needed it to pass important examinations such as A-levels and university degree courses.
“They were already at a stressful time in their lives.”
Jailing McKee for two and a half years, the judge told him: “There can be no other sentence but imprisonment for this persistent fraud.”