12 June 2012
The High Court will tomorrow (13 June 2012) decide whether a legal claim brought by UK Uncut Legal Action, an NGO inspired by the anti-cuts direct action group UK Uncut, against HMRC over the alleged Goldman Sachs ‘sweetheart’ tax deal can proceed to a full hearing.
Mr Justice Simon will be asked to grant permission in a judicial review claim, which challenges the decision taken by HMRC which allegedly let Goldman Sachs off paying up to £20million of tax owed.
UK Uncut Legal Action have welcomed the Public Accounts Committee's call for greater scrutiny into tax deals reached between HMRC and several major companies and have agreed with much of the Committee's criticisms regarding tax chiefs allegedly bending rules to do favours for big firms at a cost of millions to the taxpayer. The impression that HMRC has an "unduly cosy" relationship with major companies must be challenged.
UK Uncut Legal Action claim its case is the only mechanism by which a declaration that the Goldman Sachs tax deal was unlawful can be obtained, and is the only way that the estimated £20million of tax owed can be returned to the public purse.
Rosa Curling from Leigh Day & Co who is representing UK Uncut Legal Action said:
“This legal action is essential not only to force Goldman Sachs to pay the money owed to the government but also to expose the decision making process that is taking place at the top of HMRC.
“Despite several requests, we have still not been given access to important documentation concerning the Goldman Sachs deal and we will be asking the court to consider making a specific order regarding disclosure.
“During this time of austerity, one of the world’s richest firms appears to have been let off paying millions of pounds in tax; it is clearly in the public interest that this alleged 'sweetheart' deal is properly reviewed by the Courts and a full hearing takes place of our client's claim.”
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