David Heaton is “bumped” out of HMRC after offering tips on how to keep money “out of the Chancellors grubby mitts”
David Heaton was filmed at a London conference entitled “101 ideas for Personal Tax Planning”, his tips included a scheme he referred to as “The Bump Plan” and informed the audience how they could exploit maternity pay rules to get the government to pay their bonuses.
Two months later Mr Heaton was working on a panel advising HMRC and the courts on artificial and aggressive tax avoidance.
This story is being covered by Panorama tonight at 8.30 p.m. on BBC 1 – “Tax, Lies and Videotape”.
This first appeared on the BBC New Web Site on Saturday 14th September here is a link to the story.
This is simply one of a series of scandals from employees at HMRC .
Previously David Hartnett, was reported to have enjoyed 107 meals with companies, tax lawyers and advisers in two years, MPs criticised the “unduly cosy” relationship with major firms.
Mr Hartnett later quit and later joined Deloites, admitted to an “error” in letting off Goldman Sachs – a decision which the committee said cost the taxpayer at least £8million, but some put at in excess of £20 million.
Cosy deals allowing Britain’s biggest firms to escape paying billions of pounds in tax have sparked calls for an inquiry.
The Public Accounts Committee has accused the government and HMRC of going easy on big firms said: “We have serious concerns about how the department handled some cases.”
Richard Brooks a former HMRC employee made a statement to the effect that “Tax policy is strongly distorted in favour of the very largest corporations. Among the harmful consequences of this are the shifting of the tax burden onto other businesses and individuals and the competitive disadvantage suffered by smaller businesses. This distortion stems from a growing capture of the corporate tax policy-making process by the largest companies.
The whole process has been overseen by a “tax and competitiveness group” comprising the finance or other directors of Vodafone Group , Diageo , RSA Insurance Group , GlaxoSmithKline , Rolls-Royce , General Electric Company, Ford Motor Company, Amey , Royal Dutch Shell plus the director of the business-funded Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation and the Director-General of the CBI. Again, the companies mentioned stand to gain significantly from the changes proposed.”
Without Richard Brooks insight we might actually fall for the Chancellors line of coming down hard on tax avoidance, when he actually means applying the full force of HMRC to small and often struggling business but letting the multi nationals get away with minimal tax.
One only has to look at Vodaphone who were treated leniently some years ago in another tax fiasco and have recently escaped paying CGT on the sale of Verizon shares, whereas a smaller trading company would have paid full whack.
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