Take That stars 'face big tax bill'

Salisbury Journal: Gary Barlow is reported to have invested £66 million into two-partnerships styled as music-industry investment schemes along with Howard Donald and Mark Owen Gary Barlow is reported to have invested £66 million into two-partnerships styled as music-industry investment schemes along with Howard Donald and Mark Owen

Gary Barlow and two other members of Take That today refused to comment on reports that they face having to pay tens of millions of pounds in tax after a court ruled a partnership in which they invested was a tax avoidance scheme.

Barlow along with Howard Donald, Mark Owen and their manager Jonathan Wild invested £66 million into two-partnerships styled as music-industry investment schemes, The Times reported.

Judge Colin Bishopp ruled that 51 partnerships set up by Icebreaker Management were to secure tax relief for members and HM Revenue and Customs is now expected to demand repayment.

In his ruling, the judge said: "The Icebreaker scheme is, and was known and understood by all concerned to be, a tax avoidance scheme.

"The aim was to secure sideways relief for the members, and to inflate the scale of the relief by unnecessary borrowing."

Almost 1,000 investors are understood to have placed at least £300 million in the scheme, The Times said.

It was alleged in 2012 that Barlow, Donald, Owen and Wild invested at least £26 million in a scheme run by Icebreaker Management.

At the time Take That's lawyers insisted the bandmates believed the investments were legitimate enterprises and that all four named paid "significant tax", according to reports.

There has been no suggestion that fellow Take That bandmates Jason Orange and Robbie Williams were involved in the scheme.

A spokesman for Take That said today there was no comment from Barlow, Donald, Owen or Wild.

An Icebreaker Management spokesman said: "Icebreaker Management is extremely disappointed with this decision since it puts a valuable source of funding for the UK's independent music industry in jeopardy.

"Icebreaker will review the full decision and consider all the LLPs' options including appeal."

A HMRC spokesman said: "HMRC has put in place generous reliefs to support genuine business investment and our tax reliefs for the creative industries work well, enabling the UK's world-class film, television and video production companies to compete on the global stage.

"But we will not tolerate abuse of the system by people trying to dodge their tax obligations. HMRC will continue to challenge in the courts and anyone who engages in tax avoidance schemes risk not only the high cost of these schemes but also lay themselves open to penalties and, potentially, prosecution."

Martin Taylor, head of client relations at Rebus Group, said: "In light of recent first tier tribunal rulings and the proposed HMRC legislation, this ruling is yet another nail in the coffin for investors. The average investor in Icebreaker invested £357,266 and there are a couple of high net worth individuals who invested many millions of pounds.

"As a result of this decision and the legislation outlined in the Budget 2014, this will not only affect investors in Icebreaker, but will impact investors in any number of schemes believed to be similar, especially where they rely on being 'Active Members' irrespective of whether they are currently being investigated by HMRC.

"Subject only to appeal, members of the partnerships should expect to receive demands for repayment of any tax relief received in the immediate future."

Comments (5)

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5:30pm Sat 10 May 14

ZeeGee, ffs says...

So the Court said "Take that!"
So the Court said "Take that!" ZeeGee, ffs
  • Score: 1

10:32pm Sat 10 May 14

Donald2000 says...

I call for this tax dodgers OBE to be annulled. It is a disgrace both to the Queen and ourselves for such people to be honoured. At the time of getting the honour and subsequently, Barlow participated in a scheme to avoid tax and ensure the Crown and HMRC did not get what was legally due to them. We cannot honour people of this kind. He has disgraced the OBE which he has been given and it should be annulled.
I call for this tax dodgers OBE to be annulled. It is a disgrace both to the Queen and ourselves for such people to be honoured. At the time of getting the honour and subsequently, Barlow participated in a scheme to avoid tax and ensure the Crown and HMRC did not get what was legally due to them. We cannot honour people of this kind. He has disgraced the OBE which he has been given and it should be annulled. Donald2000
  • Score: 2

11:50pm Sat 10 May 14

mixxer says...

Donald2000 wrote:
I call for this tax dodgers OBE to be annulled. It is a disgrace both to the Queen and ourselves for such people to be honoured. At the time of getting the honour and subsequently, Barlow participated in a scheme to avoid tax and ensure the Crown and HMRC did not get what was legally due to them. We cannot honour people of this kind. He has disgraced the OBE which he has been given and it should be annulled.
Your "Queen" is nothing but a tax dodger too!
[quote][p][bold]Donald2000[/bold] wrote: I call for this tax dodgers OBE to be annulled. It is a disgrace both to the Queen and ourselves for such people to be honoured. At the time of getting the honour and subsequently, Barlow participated in a scheme to avoid tax and ensure the Crown and HMRC did not get what was legally due to them. We cannot honour people of this kind. He has disgraced the OBE which he has been given and it should be annulled.[/p][/quote]Your "Queen" is nothing but a tax dodger too! mixxer
  • Score: 0

9:06am Sun 11 May 14

Donald2000 says...

mixxer wrote:
Donald2000 wrote:
I call for this tax dodgers OBE to be annulled. It is a disgrace both to the Queen and ourselves for such people to be honoured. At the time of getting the honour and subsequently, Barlow participated in a scheme to avoid tax and ensure the Crown and HMRC did not get what was legally due to them. We cannot honour people of this kind. He has disgraced the OBE which he has been given and it should be annulled.
Your "Queen" is nothing but a tax dodger too!
The Queen is not obligated to pay tax. She is the only person above the law because she is deemed to be incapable of doing any wrong, therefore she does not pay any tax and this, I am afraid is a constitutional principle.

Please review constitutional law before posting such nonsense.
[quote][p][bold]mixxer[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Donald2000[/bold] wrote: I call for this tax dodgers OBE to be annulled. It is a disgrace both to the Queen and ourselves for such people to be honoured. At the time of getting the honour and subsequently, Barlow participated in a scheme to avoid tax and ensure the Crown and HMRC did not get what was legally due to them. We cannot honour people of this kind. He has disgraced the OBE which he has been given and it should be annulled.[/p][/quote]Your "Queen" is nothing but a tax dodger too![/p][/quote]The Queen is not obligated to pay tax. She is the only person above the law because she is deemed to be incapable of doing any wrong, therefore she does not pay any tax and this, I am afraid is a constitutional principle. Please review constitutional law before posting such nonsense. Donald2000
  • Score: 0

10:35am Mon 12 May 14

endthelies says...

Barlow asked us to donate to children in need and various other causes whilst 'avoiding' paying his tax. He 'avoided' paying towards the health service, the police service, the education system etc etc. But then he is a well known Tory supporter and donations from him have helped them throughout the years, unlike Jimmy Carr who Cameron vilified for his part in tax evasion. However, its seems to be a different tune coming from Cameron now. I wonder why?
Barlow asked us to donate to children in need and various other causes whilst 'avoiding' paying his tax. He 'avoided' paying towards the health service, the police service, the education system etc etc. But then he is a well known Tory supporter and donations from him have helped them throughout the years, unlike Jimmy Carr who Cameron vilified for his part in tax evasion. However, its seems to be a different tune coming from Cameron now. I wonder why? endthelies
  • Score: 0
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