HMRC to net more than £800k in evasion case

by Calum Fuller

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05 Jul 2012

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PROPERTY MILLIONAIRE Michael Shanly has been ordered to pay more than £800,000 to the Revenue after he pleaded guilty to tax evasion.

He held an offshore account with HSBC's Swiss private bank in which he hid his mother's money from the taxman. He failed to disclose the existence of that sum to the Revenue, despite having the opportunity to do so during an investigation, and later closed the account when he suspected HMRC may detect it.

When his mother died, he transferred the money, thereby evading £430,000 in inheritance tax.

The taxman then brought proceedings against him, and he was ordered to pay the £430,000 and hit with a further £400,000 fine at Wood Green Crown Court.

HMRC insists it offered several opportunities for disclosure, including two in 2008 and 2010 for those with money offshore to come forwards and pay anything that was due.

Shanly did not take up those chances and his is the first case to come to light after a disc was stolen from HSBC, containing details of UK citizens with HSBC bank accounts in Geneva. That information was later disclosed to the Revenue.

HMRC criminal investigators will continue reviewing the information and further prosecutions are said to be likely.

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