Amongst the very limited good news in this week's budget was the announcement that the likes of Amazon and eBay are to be made liable for the VAT fraud that has been endemic on their trading platforms. The Guardian covers the story here. It has, of course, been referred to many times on this blog. Even HMRC admit the cost to be at least £1.2 billion a year and to date their efforts to collect the money have been pathetic, at best.
But one man has beaten them into submission. I take my hat off to Richard Allen, whose single handed campaign against this abuse has been fundamental to the Public Accounts Committee taking it up, and now to action resulting.
There are very few people who singlehandedly take action that improves their government's fortunes by £1.2 billion, but Richard has.
And what has been his reward? Nothing so far.
When tax cheats get knighthoods I am aware Richard has never received a note of thanks. And that is something that does need to change. If a person deserved an honour for services to the UK's well being Richard does. But that's not the way the UK honours system works.