HC Deb 03 May 1956 vol 552 cc583-4
34. Mr. Lewis

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he is aware that a large number of bookmaking concerns are illegally carrying on a cash postal betting business; that betting duty is not charged on these bets; and what action he proposes to take to ensure that the Treasury receives its betting duties and taxes from this business in the manner prescribed by law.

Mr. H. Brooke

I have seen the hon. Member's recent Questions to my right hon. Friends on this subject. The pool betting duty does not apply to fixed odds betting, but if the hon. Member has any specific evidence that payment of this or of any other tax is being evaded, I will gladly look into the matter if he will send me full details.

Mr. Lewis

Surely the Minister is aware that illegality is taking place? Will he not consult his right hon. Friend to see that these big bookmaking concerns are treated in the same way as the street-corner bookmakers, and that when they break the law action is taken against them? Treat them all alike; that is all I ask.

Mr. Brooke

My business is to see that the tax is collected. If somebody is acting illegally in a betting matter, that is not a question for the Chancellor of the Exchequer or for me.