Lord Ashcroft abandons non-dom status to keep Lords seat

Multi-millionaire Tory benefactor Lord Ashcroft has finally abandoned his
non-dom status to become a regular British taxpayer in order to retain his seat
in the House of Lords and influence in UK politics.

The deputy Conservative party chairman made the switch before the deadline
passed requiring him to abandon his non-dom status or give up his seat in the

He is accompanied by Labour peer Lord Paul, an Indian-born British-based
business magnate, who has retained his position as a legislator by agreeing to
pay UK tax.

However, four other peers, including two Tories, have relinquished their
right to sit in the upper chamber.

Tory donor Lord Laidlaw of Rothiemay, former party treasurer Lord McAlpine,
Lord Bagri, best known for his ten-year battle with Westminster Council over
renovations to his prospective home in Regents Park, and cross-bench peer
Baroness Dunn, former deputy chairman of banking giant HSBC, have all abandoned
their positions in order to retain non-dom status.

All four informed the Lords authorities before the end of the three-month
deadline that they were leaving the House.

Lord Ashcroft was the centre of much political controversy due to his funding
for campaigns in marginal seats during the last general election while appearing
to maintain a financial empire from the tax haven of Belize. He announced he
would be giving up his non-dom status earlier this year.

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