HMRC restaurant taskforce begins 531 investigations

A TASK FORCE dealing with restaurants suspected of evading taxes has begun investigations on 531 businesses since being established in May.

This was the first task force announced by HM Revenue & Customs, which said it would undertake “intensive bursts of compliance activity in specific high-risk trade sectors and locations across the UK”.

HMRC said there was no estimate of how much total tax was under consideration. However, for the 45 cases where figures have been processed, the amount under consideration was £634,000 – an average of around £14,000.

The task force has focused on London, Scotland and the North West of England. Scotland had been the richest source of investigations, where 222 have begun, compared with 159 in London and 150 in the North West.

HMRC said that 22 cases are currently being considered for criminal prosecution or Civil Investigation of Fraud procedures.

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