Tax evaders in the private security industry are being targeted as part of a new wave of taskforces launched this month by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC).
This particular taskforce is to target security guards, bouncers and their employers in London and the South East. HMRC’s taskforces are designed to visit traders unannounced and examine their records, carrying out investigations to decide if the right amount of tax is being paid.
HMRC has experienced a rise in fraudulent VAT repayment claims being submitted by the private security industry and it is hoped the taskforce will retrieve as much as £10 million in unpaid tax.
Jennie Granger, director general of enforcement and compliance at HMRC, said: "HMRC taskforces are deployed in sectors and areas where we’ve detected a high risk of tax evasion. If you have declared all your income, you have nothing to worry about.
"But, if you haven’t, we will find you, investigate you and not only could you face a heavy fine, but a criminal prosecution as well."
Other HMRC taskforces are being launched this month to tackle tax evasion in other high-risk trade sectors such as London’s construction industry, hidden wealth in the Midlands and the hidden economy in the second-hand motor trade, also in the Midlands. Each of these sectors is expected to recover £3 million in unpaid tax.
David Gauke, exchequer secretary to the Treasury, said: "We are determined to support hardworking people who want to get on, but the people being targeted by these taskforces have no intention of playing by the rules.
"This Government has made it clear that we will not tolerate tax evasion and we have provided HMRC with the resources to crack down on those who break the rules."
To date, HMRC has launched 54 taskforces since 2011. A further 16 are planned for the 2013-14 tax year and up to 30 more in 2014-15.
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