HC Deb 04 June 1996 vol 278 cc359-60W
Mr. Battle

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what estimate he has made of the savings accruing to public funds from campaigns against tax fraud in each year since 1979; [30415]

(2) how many staff have been employed full time by the Treasury in tackling tax fraud for each year since 1979; [30418]

(3) how much was spent by his Department on publicity campaigns against tax fraud for each year since 1979. [30420]

Mr. Jack

[holding answer 21 May 1996]: It is not possible to isolate resources relating to fraud cases from other tax investigation work, but I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave the hon. Member for Darlington (Mr. Milburn) on 3 November 1995, Official Report, column 503 about the resources used for tax investigations generally back to 1988–89. Accurate figures are not available as far back as 1979.

The Inland Revenue seeks all appropriate opportunities to publicise its compliance activities. Publicity is sought for every successful Revenue prosecution and significant levels of press coverage have been achieved for its compliance work. In addition, contributions have been given to radio and television programmes, with occasional full-length feature programmes about the Revenue's work including its anti-evasion operations.

Given the varied nature of all this publicity, it is not possible to estimate its actual impact on tax revenues.

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