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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
Emma B BS: Government Spying (UK) (28) RE: BS: Government Spying (UK) 22 Sep 10

I posted about this on 16 Aug 10 - 08:45 AM in the BS: No longer Great Britain? thread

If I may be 'forgiven' for cutting and pasting from my own post including (mea culpa) an extract from a parliamentary question ...

"...Cameron has declared war on benefit fraudsters in a bid to cut billions from the welfare bill and has won the approval of the tabloid headline-writers by calling in credit check companies to pursue benefit swindlers.
Has anyone actually costed this?


The OFFICIAL figure for criminal defrauding the welfare system is £1bn

This compares with the cost to the public purse of illegal tax evasion of £15bn
(This figure of course does not include the unknown billions estimated to be lost to the public purse from tax avoidance)

A recent answer to a Parliamentary Question (from Katy Clark MP) revealed that:

'HM Revenue and Customs spent £633,284 (excluding VAT) on advertising for the purposes of preventing tax evasion last year. There was no expenditure in the previous two years'.

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much his Department budgeted for advertising tackling benefit fraud in each of the last three financial years

Chris Grayling:
'Budgeted expenditure for advertising tackling benefit fraud

2007-08 £6.5 million
2008-09 £6.0 million
2009-10 £5.0 million
Note: Includes media costs, PR, production and research costs. It excludes VAT.'

over three years tackling tax evasion of £15bn was worth just £633,000 but tackling benefit fraud of £1bn was worth £17.5 million.?

Perhaps the headline should be -

"Benefit fraud is 624 times more serious than tax evasion" as reported on the Tax Research UK Website

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