Friday, October 13, 2023

Ex-F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone to pay more than $1 billion over tax fraud

Audit failure is not down to any one firm: the whole audit system is designed to fail to suit the interests of big business and their auditors

Former Formula One boss - and former Labour donor - Bernie Ecclestone has been given a suspended prison sentence after pleading guilty to a tax fraud allegation and agreed to pay a £652mn civil settlement

Bernie Ecclestone pleads guilty to tax fraud. He has agreed to pay £653m to UK tax authorities. He said he was "was fed up of paying huge bills for advice", so decided to... pay 50x more instead to end the case?

So a £400.000,000 fraud gets you a fine but no jail time. Anyone wondering if our overcrowded prisons are for the ‘little people’ or why 50% of crime is now fraud and not included in the crime figures?

 Bernie Ecclestone news on Black Friday added to Wiki

Handshake approach that helped rule motorsport for decades appears to have been his downfal

By Sam Tobin

London: Ex-Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone has agreed to pay more than 652 million pounds ($AU1.2 billion) after pleading guilty to tax fraud in a London court on Thursday, prosecutors said.

The 92-year-old appeared at Southwark Crown Court and admitted to one count of fraud by false representation, just over a month before he was due to stand trial.

Former Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone arrives at a London court.

Former Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone arrives at a London court.CREDIT: AP

Ecclestone, accompanied by his wife Fabiana, spoke only to confirm his name and to enter his plea. “I plead guilty,” he said.

Ecclestone admitted giving a misleading answer to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) at a July 2015 meeting, when he said he had established only a single trust in favour of his daughters and was not a beneficiary or settlor of any other trust.

“Mr Ecclestone did not know the true position and was therefore not in a position to provide a positive or negative answer,” prosecutor Richard Wright said on Thursday.

He added that Ecclestone had agreed a civil settlement with HMRC, under which he will pay 652.6 million pounds covering tax, interest and penalties for 18 tax years between 1994 and 2022.

Ecclestone’s lawyer Clare Montgomery told the court that Ecclestone “did not know the true position” about whether he was the beneficiary or settlor of any other trust.

“He should have said ‘I don’t know’ rather than ‘No’,” Montgomery said. She added that Ecclestone’s answer to HMRC was an “impulsive lapse of judgment”.