New crime maps launched

HMRC has launched a new online interactive map that demonstrates some of their successes in tackling tax evasion and avoidance. There are two maps, the first shows convictions resulting in jail sentences since April 2013. The second map shows the locations of HMRC taskforces since they were introduced in 2011.

According to the latest figures published between April 2010 and March 2014, HMRC has prosecuted 2,650 individuals for tax crimes and secured a total of 2,700 years in jail sentences in the same timeframe.

The taskforces are part of HMRC’s wider remit to tackle evasion and avoidance which includes targeted campaigns. The targeting of specific sectors is not an amnesty and unlike some other HMRC initiatives which seek to tempt taxpayers to come forward under favourable terms there is no formal disclosure facility on offer when a business is targeted by a taskforce. Businesses targeted by any of HMRC’s taskforces should also be aware of the real threat of a criminal investigation and a custodial sentence for tax evasion.

HMRC’s Chief Executive, Lin Homer, said:

'HMRC is prosecuting more tax cheats every year and targeting more trades and professions where we have identified that tax revenue is at risk. This map shows the scale of our criminal investigation operations, so tax cheats should be seriously worried that HMRC is coming for them next.'

The site has been launched as a pilot and HMRC is expected to add further information over the coming months.

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