Tax avoidance: a note to editors

   0   0 Blog

Tax practitioner Noel Hodson has just issued the following notes to editors about the term ‘tax avoidance’:

Most media, even the BBC, persist in quoting notorious professional tax-planners, embedded in the establishment, that “tax avoidance is completely legal”. My 50+ years of practical, hands-on case work tells me that elaborate tax schemes, particularly via the 74 tax-havens are illegal in all OECD and most other tax regions – including the UK.

The people you are taking advice from – probably major law and accountancy firms – have become habituated to fiddling the books – writing false invoices – bending contracts and valuations (e.g. The UK owned Formula One rights that Ecclestone “gave” his now ex-wife in Litchenstein which 24 months later were sold for £2 billion. HMRC have the power to revalue the asset as it left the UK – say at £1.8 billion, which would be taxed).

These major advisers are almost certainly criminally responsible for the schemes they have devised – and then approved as auditors. The media should seek other advice from non-schemers who are not threatened with the immense expense of their schemes since 1980 (Big Bang Soft Touch etc) being found in court to be illicit in tax-law – and with possible jail sentences for fraudulent bookkeeping.

I have written extensively about tax avoidance and evasion on my Blogsite – e.g. see

and today…  (COMMENT – The PR machine for the tax evasion industry still convinces all media and many hapless clients that such schemes are “wholly legal”. But it is most unlikely that they are legal. It is most likely that they are fraudulent – and many are fraudulent-conspiracies. All legitimate profit and money transfers that are tax-deductible in the homeland country require that the transactions are (1) ARMS LENGTH (not from you, to you, by you) (2) ON NORMAL COMMERCIAL TERMS (not exaggerated contracts or values to transfer profits offshore) (3) WHOLLY NECESSARY (for the commercial enterprise) and (4) NOT TO AVOID TAX (not as single or group transactions, devised to reduce homeland taxes). 

A rule of thumb test used by accountants is “Have you been advised to hide your identity from tax collectors at any stage in the chain?” If YES, the transactions are almost certainly illegal and the scheme will fail in court. It is time that the media took some sensible tax advice from experts other than the major tax-planners who, like Arthur Andersen, are and have been criminally complicit in such schemes for 30 years, and might be jailed – as happens to American professional tax schemers.

Yours truly – Noel Hodson
(Tax Reconciliations – From tax-havens to safe-havens)

Related Posts

Is tax avoidance at the heart of Ireland’s economic miracle?

AIB International Finance Centre Dublin - By Estoy Aquí (Own work) [GFDL ( or CC BY 3.0 (], via Wikimedia CommonsComing out of the economic crisis Ireland was one of the best performing economies, with GDP growth rates of 8.5% in 2014 and an extraordinary 26.3% in 2015. But how much of this economic activity was real, and how much a fiction created by Ireland’s tax haven status? A new paper by Heike Joebges of the University […]


New Report: HMRC’s “Building our Future” programme

bigben-mcbigbenfaceYesterday the Tax Justice Network was in the UK Parliament to launch a report it co-produced with the Public and Commercial Services Union. The report, entitled “HMRC, Building an Uncertain Future” is a study of HMRC’s (the UK tax authority) reform plans which it is calling “Building our Future”. The report published yesterday analysed the […]


Financial secrecy in football: time for action

bigben-mcbigbenfaceEveryone has known for years that football is rotten to the core and financial secrecy is at the heart of the problem. Why then is no one doing anything about it? This post from the Offshore Game project originally features in the Independent. 


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to Top