Cameron to announce new corporate offence for tax evasion

Cameron to announce new corporate offence for tax evasion

Prime minister set to make announcement on companies which encourage tax evasion, while he launches joint taskforce with HMRC to deal with Panama Papers.

DAVID CAMERON is set to launch a major offensive against UK tax evaders today following the controversy which emerged from the Panama Papers leak.

In a statement to the Commons, Cameron will announce the UK is to bring forward plans to introduce a new criminal offence for corporations that fail to take adequate steps to prevent the facilitation of tax evasion.

In a further push to clamp down on tax evasion, the government will create a new taskforce to investigate the financial affairs of companies mentioned in the Panama Papers.

The taskforce will be jointly led by HMRC and the National Crime Agency and draws on investigators, compliance specialists and analysts from HMRC, the National Crime Agency, the Serious Fraud Office and the Financial Conduct Authority.

According to HMRC, it is already investigating 700 current leads they have with a link to Panama.

Announcing the new task force, David Cameron said: “The UK has been at the forefront of international action to tackle the global scourge of aggressive tax avoidance and evasion, and international corruption more broadly.

“There is clearly further to go and this taskforce will bring together the best of British expertise to deal with any wrongdoing relating to the Panama Papers.

“This world-class operation will report to the chancellor and the home secretary on their strategy for taking action later this year, when we will update Parliament,” continued the prime Minister.

This will be the prime minister’s first appearance in front of MPs since the Mossack Fonseca leak and the public anger surrounding his own tax affairs.

There have been calls for the Conservative Party leader to resign after the biggest data leak in history revealed that Ian Cameron, the prime minister’s late father, was a client of Fonseca and allegedly used the law firm to protect investment fund Blairmore Holdings from UK taxes.

The prime minister, who in 2013 urged British overseas territories to work with him to “get their house in order”, has now published his tax returns and other financial data for public viewing, dating from 2009 to 2015 in an attempt to defuse public outrage over his tax affairs. Chancellor George Osborne is also considering publishing his tax returns.

It has also been revealed that Edward Troup, the soon-to-be leader of HMRC, previously worked at law firm Simmons & Simmon which represented a number of offshore companies, including Blairmore Holdings. Troup is currently serving as HMRC’s executive chair and permanent secretary.

There is no suggestion of wrongdoing by Troup, Simmons & Simmons or any of its clients.

Resources & Whitepapers

Why Professional Services Firms Should Ditch Folders and Embrace Metadata

Professional Services Why Professional Services Firms Should Ditch Folders and Embrace Metadata

2m

Why Professional Services Firms Should Ditch Folde...

In the past decade, the professional services industry has transformed significantly. Digital disruptions, increased competition, and changing market ...

View resource
2 Vital keys to Remaining Competitive for Professional Services Firms

2 Vital keys to Remaining Competitive for Professional Services Firms

6m

2 Vital keys to Remaining Competitive for Professi...

In recent months, professional services firms are facing more pressure than ever to deliver value to clients. Often, clients look at the firms own inf...

View resource
Turn Accounts Payable into a value-engine

Accounting Firms Turn Accounts Payable into a value-engine

1m

Turn Accounts Payable into a value-engine

In a world of instant results and automated workloads, the potential for AP to drive insights and transform results is enormous. But, if you’re still ...

View resource
Digital Links: A guide to MTD in 2021

Making Tax Digital Digital Links: A guide to MTD in 2021

2m

Digital Links: A guide to MTD in 2021

The first phase of Making Tax Digital (MTD) saw the requirement for the digital submission of the VAT Return using compliant software. That’s now behi...

View resource