Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Tax protest closes Vodafone shop in London's Oxford Street

We recently blogged a Private Eye story about Vodafone's tax games, involving the corporation not paying as much tax as it really ought to. Now we are heartened to see this happening on the streets of Britain, as it plunges into a new era of austerity. From Sky News:
Protesters have closed a Vodafone store in London's Oxford Street in a demonstration over an alleged unpaid £6bn tax bill. Vodafone has confirmed the shop will remain shut until it is safe to open it again. However, it disputes not paying a £6bn tax bill.
(it would, of course, dispute that. This is presumably the Philip Green defence: "no tax was avoided because none was due" - which seeks to paper over the fact that no tax was due because a number of legal shenanigans were engaged in, to make sure that no tax was due). Back to Sky News:
Activist Chris Coltrane, at the demonstration, tweeted: "Vodafone have dodged £6bn tax. That would have paid for almost all the welfare cuts. "We're shutting down their flagship store in protest."
It is excellent to see private citizens taking tax dodging as seriously as we do. Hat tip: Chris Jordan, ActionAid.

Update: the best story we've seen on this so far is from the New Statesman. Read it, and you get a sense of the anger out there.


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