Revenue under fire from NAO
Audit watchdog queries missing £400m
The National Audit Office has slammed HM Revenue & Customs for its
failure to account for nearly £400m during 2005/2006 forcing the watchdog to
qualify its opinion on HMRC’s finances for the fourth successive year.
It said a further £1bn could have been lost during 2003-4 by the government’s
administration of its complex tax credit system.
‘The first full results of the new tax credit scheme since its introduction
in April 2003 show that the level of claimant error and fraud was unacceptably
high. I have therefore once again qualified my audit opinion on the trust
statement,’ said Sir John Bourn, head of the NAO
Sir John insisted that the replacement tax credits system had to fully comply
with established government standards on security after figures for
2005/2006 between £190m and £280m were lost to fraud and error.