It\’s a perfect example of the man\’s working methods.
He gave evidence in the Brighton UKUncut trial and in explaining why he did so he states:
As a result it is clear that the Coalition is choosing to leave money with the tax crooks and cheats instead of collecting it to pay pensions, educate children, fund the NHS, keep our armed forces armed and so much more. It’s that choice that UK Uncut were highlighting – picking on Top Shop because Sir Philip Green’s family are widely reported to have actively avoided £285 million of tax in one year in the mid noughties.
But that very estimate of avoidance was prepared by Ritchie himself.
Which is the working method. Make up some shit, bandy it about then claim that someone else has reported it so therefore it\’s a true figure that must be taken into account.
This goes through all of his reports and papers. You start looking at the references in a paper for, just as an example, the TUC and you\’ll see that the references are a R. Murphy paper for PCS, a Tax Justice Network (R. Murphy) document, or a Christian Aid (advised by R. Murphy) piece.
And every time what is somewhere between conjecture and provably wrong in the original paper is taken as clear evidence and proof in the subsequent ones.
It\’s all entirely self-referential. And it\’s never explained that it is.
As to Green\’s family actively avoiding tax. Ritchie still refuses to understand that no tax was due. At all.
This was not tax avoidance this was that strange beast known as \”obeying the law\”.
Arcadia was bought by a company called Taveta. Taveta was, at the time it purchased Arcadia, owned by Tina Green. Tina Green is neither domiciled nor resident in the UK. Dividends paid to Tina Green are therefore not subject to UK taxation: that\’s it.
You could argue that if P. Green had handed over the shares three minutes before paying the dividend that this was deliberate \”avoidance\” and to be honest, I\’d find it hard to argue against you if you did so.
But that absolutely is not what happened.
A foreigner, not resident or domiciled in the UK, has got dividends free of UK income tax.
As all foreigners not resident or domiciled in the UK get their dividends from UK companies free of UK income tax.
And that\’s it folks, that\’s just all there is.