Senior accountant acquitted of cheating the revenue

Nigel Sangster QC led for the defence of Martin Calcutt, who was acquitted of cheating the revenue in respect of a tax avoidance scheme, enabling a Liverpool educational charity - Rotunda - to survive a financial crisis. The Revenue had asserted that transactions, involving the gift of government gilts said to take place in a particular year, were ineffective, and had taken place in a different year. The team were able to demonstrate that the transactions were legally effective. HMRC nonetheless proceeded on the basis that tax relief of over £2.5m had been claimed for a year in which it was not due. After calling half its evidence and seeing what its witnesses said in cross-examination, HMRC withdrew its case - a decision with which the judge publicly agreed.


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