HMRC has responded to the significant leak of information on the activities of individuals and companies that have availed themselves of the offshore advantages of using Panama as a tax haven.
We have reproduced below part of their response:
Jennie Granger, Director General of Enforcement and Compliance, HM Revenue and Customs, said:
“HMRC is committed to exposing and acting on financial wrongdoing and we relentlessly pursue tax evaders to ensure that they pay every penny of taxes and fines they owe.
HMRC can confirm that we have already received a great deal of information on offshore companies, including in Panama, from a wide range of sources, which is currently the subject of intensive investigation. We have asked the ICIJ to share the leaked data that they have obtained with us. We will closely examine this data and will act on it swiftly and appropriately.
We have brought in more than £2 billion from offshore tax evaders since 2010 and the Government has repeatedly strengthened our powers and resources with new criminal offences and higher penalties, so we can take even tougher action against the minority who try to cheat the honest majority by hiding their money in offshore tax havens.
Our message is clear: there are no safe havens for tax evaders and no-one should be in any doubt that the days of hiding money offshore are gone. The dishonest minority, who can most afford it, must pay their legal share of tax, like the honest majority already does.”