The first taskforces to tackle tax cheats in the rag trade and alcohol industry were launched this month by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). They are expected to recover around £17 million in extra tax, interest and penalties.
The specialist taskforce teams will target those who do not pay the right amount of tax in:
- The rag trade in the Midlands, North Wales and North West, including manufacturing, wholesale, retail and textile recycling;
- The alcohol industry in Scotland, including Aberdeen and Inverness;
- The rental property sector in the South East.
Taskforces are specialist teams that undertake intensive bursts of compliance check activity in specific trade sectors and locations in the UK, where the taxman feels there is a high risk of tax evasion. The teams of tax inspectors will visit traders to examine their records and carry out other tax investigations. HMRC has launched 30 tax taskforces since May 2011. Taskforces bring together various HMRC compliance and enforcement teams for intensive bursts of activity targeted at specific sectors and locations. Taskforces target the highest-risk cases in a particular sector and location, typically focusing on groups of up to around 300 taxpayers. David Gauke, the Exchequer Secretary, said: “HMRC is on target to collect more than £50 million as a result of taskforces launched in 2011-12.”
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