Review: Rod Bond Tax Fraud and HMRC: Episode Five: The Scam that Scammed Them All: UK Film Tax Relief (FTR)

In the fifth episode of the multi-part documentary series, Rod Bond Tax Fraud and HMRC, the Hollywood actor explores the UK Film Tax Relief scams. With various culprits, numerous tribunals and appeals and millions of pounds owed to HMRC, film tax relief scams have been a recurring news item over the course of the last decade. Great interest has been garnered around the subject, with hundreds of celebrities affected by the scam. Based on tax reliefs provided by HMRC to encourage the UK film industry, some investors thought they were making legitimate tax efficient investments. However, as the fifth episode of Rod Bond and Tax Fraud shows, other investors plotted to steal and cheat money from the public purse by way of film tax relief.

 

Host Roderick Bond initiates the episode by discussing the real story behind the film entitled “A Landscape of Lies.” Starring television host Andrea McLean and former Eastenders actor Marc Bannerman, the film was hastily produced to cover up what was an elaborate attempt to defraud film tax relief from HMRC. A group of scammers led by Bashar al-Issa belonging to the bogus film company Evolved Pictures, falsely applied for tax relief to the sum of approximately £2.5 million. However, discovering discrepancies in the paperwork, HMRC investigated the matter further. In a bid to avoid detection, the group hastily produced “A Landscape of Lies” attempting to pass it off as a legitimate production. Roderick Bond speaks to Andrea McLean, who was completely oblivious to her entanglement in the elaborate tax scam.

Alongside “A Landscape of Lies,” Roderick Bond explores the case of the racing film scam orchestrated by One Formula Limited Liability partnership. During the episode, Roderick Bond visits Alex White, from the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), who led the case against One Formula LLP. Prosecuting QC Jane Bewsey also appears during the episode, detailing the intricacies of how the tax relief fraud case unravelled. Also, the trial’s original judge, who sentenced the One Formula LLP gang, Joanna Korner also discusses her thoughts on the tax relief fraud case.