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On 29 February we reported that Labour party candidate for the mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, had allegedly avoided £50,000 in tax, claims which he is now denying…

According to Companies House documents that surfaced, Ken Livingstone avoided paying over £50,000 tax on his earnings in 2009.

Livingstone denies the tax avoidance claims saying it is a ‘smear campaign’ running to harm his chances in London’s Mayoral Election.

Labour’s candidate for the mayor of London has recently been criticised for being a hypocrite in his attack on those who practice tax avoidance whilst supposedly avoiding tax himself.

Livingstone publicly branded tax avoiders as ‘rich b*******’ and said that they should “not be allowed to vote in a British election, let alone sit in Parliament, unless they pay their full share of tax”.

On BBC Ones Andrew Marr Show, Sunday 11 March, Ken Livingstone defended the tax avoidance claims:

“I am in exactly the same position as everybody else who has a small business. I mean, I get loads of money, all from different sources, and I give it to an accountant and they manage it.

“You pay corporation tax. If you then take out spending yourself, you have to pay more. What I am not doing is paying income tax on the money I use to employ other people.

“The simple fact is, and the hypocrisy of all this, is Boris Johnson [who Livingstone lost the 2008 London Mayoral election too] has exactly the same arrangements to handle his earnings from television. Almost everybody in the media, who is not employed directly, has exactly the same arrangements.

“I am not offshore. I am running a small company, just like hundreds of thousands of people. It’s a smear campaign currently being run,” said Livingstone.

Tax avoidance is one of Government’s major concerns in the current economic climate and they are adopting new tactics and proposals to cut down tax avoidance by UK businesses and wealthy Britons to reduce the tax deficit.

Tax Avoidance is a legal way of reducing your tax obligations, although if HMRC discover a tax avoidance scheme they will do their best to close its operation down.

KinsellaTax staff consists of ex-HM Inspector of Taxes and ex-HM Custom and Excise Officers, fully experienced in HMRC investigations.

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