European judges have forced Britain to pay back billions in tax to multinational companies, overturning the decisions of British chancellors going back more than 40 years.
The Mail on Sunday has established that major corporations including tobacco giants, insurers and hoteliers have been awarded payments running into hundreds of millions of pounds from HMRC in the past year as a series of long-running lawsuits reaches a climax.
In the most extraordinary case, HMRC handed £620 million to British American Tobacco (BAT) after the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled it taxed the company too heavily for more than 26 years. That bill could double if interest is added.
If you add up all that might (and “might” has a pretty elastic meaning here) have to be paid back it’s £43 billion by the Mail’s numbers. And to answer the headline no, of course this doesn’t appear in Ritchie’s numbers. But it rather shouldn, shouldn’t it?
Not just how much tax should the bastard companies be paying but the true figure, after the amount that bastard HMRC is over charging?