Finance Bill - continued        House of Lords

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SCHEDULE 6
 
  AGGREGATES LEVY: EVASION, MISDECLARATION AND NEGLECT
  PART I
  CRIMINAL OFFENCES
 
Evasion
     1. - (1) A person is guilty of an offence if he is knowingly concerned in, or in the taking of steps with a view to-
 
 
    (a) the fraudulent evasion by that person of any aggregates levy with which he is charged; or
 
    (b) the fraudulent evasion by any other person of any aggregates levy with which that other person is charged.
      (2) The references in sub-paragraph (1) above to the evasion of aggregates levy include references to obtaining, in circumstances where there is no entitlement to it, either a tax credit or a repayment of aggregates levy.
 
      (3) A person guilty of an offence under this paragraph shall be liable (subject to sub-paragraph (4) below)-
 
 
    (a) on summary conviction, to a penalty of the statutory maximum or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or to both;
 
    (b) on conviction on indictment, to a penalty of any amount or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding seven years, or to both.
      (4) In the case of any offence under this paragraph, where the statutory maximum is less than three times the sum of the amounts of aggregates levy which are shown to be amounts that were or were intended to be evaded, the penalty on summary conviction shall be the amount equal to three times that sum (instead of the statutory maximum).
 
      (5) For the purposes of sub-paragraph (4) above the amounts of levy that were or were intended to be evaded shall be taken to include-
 
 
    (a) the amount of any tax credit, and
 
    (b) the amount of any repayment of aggregates levy,
       which was, or was intended to be, obtained in circumstances where there was no entitlement to it.
 
      (6) In determining for the purposes of sub-paragraph (4) above how much aggregates levy (in addition to any amount falling within sub-paragraph (5) above) was or was intended to be evaded, no account shall be taken of the extent (if any) to which any liability to aggregates levy of any person fell, or would have fallen, to be reduced by the amount of any tax credit or repayment of aggregates levy to which he was, or would have been, entitled.
 
 
Misstatements
     2. - (1) A person is guilty of an offence if, with the requisite intent and for purposes connected with aggregates levy-
 
 
    (a) he produces or provides, or causes to be produced or provided, any document which is false in a material particular; or
 
    (b) he otherwise makes use of such a document;
       and in this sub-paragraph "the requisite intent" means the intent to deceive any person or to secure that a machine will respond to the document as if it were a true document.
 
      (2) A person is guilty of an offence if, in providing any information under any provision made by or under this Part of this Act-
 
 
    (a) he makes a statement which he knows to be false in a material particular; or
 
    (b) he recklessly makes a statement which is false in a material particular.
      (3) A person guilty of an offence under this paragraph shall be liable (subject to sub-paragraph (4) below)-
 
 
    (a) on summary conviction, to a penalty of the statutory maximum or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or to both;
 
    (b) on conviction on indictment, to a penalty of any amount or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding seven years, or to both.
      (4) In the case of any offence under this paragraph, where-
 
 
    (a) the document referred to in sub-paragraph (1) above is a return required under any provision made by or under this Part of this Act, or
 
    (b) the information referred to in sub-paragraph (2) above is contained in or otherwise relevant to such a return,
       the amount of the penalty on summary conviction shall be whichever is the greater of the statutory maximum and the amount equal to three times the sum of the amounts (if any) by which the return understates any person's liability to aggregates levy.
 
      (5) In sub-paragraph (4) above the reference to the amount by which any person's liability to aggregates levy is understated shall be taken to be equal to the sum of-
 
 
    (a) the amount (if any) by which his gross liability was understated; and
 
    (b) the amount (if any) by which any entitlements of his to tax credits and repayments of aggregates levy were overstated.
      (6) In sub-paragraph (5) above "gross liability" means liability to aggregates levy before any deduction is made in respect of any entitlement to any tax credit or repayments of aggregates levy.
 
 
Conduct involving evasions or misstatements
     3. - (1) A person is guilty of an offence under this paragraph if his conduct during any particular period must have involved the commission by him of one or more offences under the preceding provisions of this Schedule.
 
      (2) For the purposes of any proceedings for an offence under this paragraph it shall be immaterial whether the particulars of the offence or offences that must have been committed are known.
 
      (3) A person guilty of an offence under this paragraph shall be liable (subject to sub-paragraph (4) below)-
 
 
    (a) on summary conviction, to a penalty of the statutory maximum or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or to both;
 
    (b) on conviction on indictment, to a penalty of any amount or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding seven years, or to both.
      (4) In the case of any offence under this paragraph, where the statutory maximum is less than three times the sum of the amounts of aggregates levy which are shown to be amounts that were or were intended to be evaded by the conduct in question, the penalty on summary conviction shall be the amount equal to three times that sum (instead of the statutory maximum).
 
      (5) For the purposes of sub-paragraph (4) above the amounts of levy that were or were intended to be evaded by any conduct shall be taken to include-
 
 
    (a) the amount of any tax credit, and
 
    (b) the amount of any repayment of aggregates levy,
       which was, or was intended to be, obtained in circumstances where there was no entitlement to it.
 
      (6) In determining for the purposes of sub-paragraph (4) above how much aggregates levy (in addition to any amount falling within sub-paragraph (5) above) was or was intended to be evaded, no account shall be taken of the extent (if any) to which any liability to aggregates levy of any person fell, or would have fallen, to be reduced by the amount of any tax credit or repayments of aggregates levy to which he was, or would have been, entitled.
 
 
Preparations for evasion
     4. - (1) Where a person-
 
 
    (a) becomes a party to any agreement under or by means of which a quantity of taxable aggregate is or is to be subjected to commercial exploitation in the United Kingdom, or
 
    (b) makes arrangements for any other person to become a party to such an agreement,
       he is guilty of an offence if he does so in the belief that aggregates levy chargeable on the aggregate in question will be evaded.
 
      (2) Subject to sub-paragraph (3) below, a person guilty of an offence under this paragraph shall be liable, on summary conviction, to a penalty of level 5 on the standard scale.
 
      (3) In the case of any offence under this paragraph, where level 5 on the standard scale is less than three times the sum of the amounts of aggregates levy which are shown to be amounts that were or were intended to be evaded in respect of the aggregate in question, the penalty shall be the amount equal to three times that sum (instead of level 5 on the standard scale).
 
      (4) For the purposes of sub-paragraph (3) above the amounts of levy that were or were intended to be evaded shall be taken to include-
 
 
    (a) the amount of any tax credit, and
 
    (b) the amount of any repayment of aggregates levy,
       which was, or was intended to be, obtained in circumstances where there was no entitlement to it.
 
      (5) In determining for the purposes of sub-paragraph (3) above how much aggregates levy (in addition to any amount falling within sub-paragraph (4) above) was or was intended to be evaded, no account shall be taken of the extent (if any) to which any liability to aggregates levy of any person fell, or would have fallen, to be reduced by the amount of any tax credit or repayments of aggregates levy to which he was, or would have been, entitled.
 
 
Criminal proceedings etc.
     5. Sections 145 to 155 of the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979 (proceedings for offences, mitigation of penalties and certain other matters) shall apply in relation to offences and penalties under this Part of this Schedule as they apply in relation to offences and penalties under the customs and excise Acts.
 
 
Arrest
     6. - (1) Where an authorised person has reasonable grounds for suspecting that a fraud offence has been committed he may arrest anyone whom he has reasonable grounds for suspecting to be guilty of the offence.
 
      (2) In this paragraph-
 
 
    "authorised person" means any person acting under the authority of the Commissioners; and
 
    "a fraud offence" means an offence under any of paragraphs 1 to 3 above.
 
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