Stat of the day: £500

The amount business secretary Vince Cable has been ordered to pay by HMRC after he failed to pay up £25,000 in VAT on his media work and book deals.

by Emma Haslett
Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013
There was a time when he was known as ‘Saint’ Vince Cable, but those days are sadly behind the business secretary: he’s just been ordered by HM Revenue & Customs to cough up £500 after he ‘unknowingly’ failed (forgot, then) to pay VAT on the estimated £192,000 he earned for speaking engagements and book deals (on top of the £65,738 he earns as an MP).

Now obviously, Cable was keen to point out that this is all a terrible mistake and that he just forgot to tell HMRC when his income went over the £73,000 threshold. And, to be fair to him, running the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills probably means that his own affairs tend to slip his mind once in a while. Apparently, his accountant spotted the mistake back in January and ‘immediately’ alerted HMRC. We doubt he’ll get off that lightly, though: after all, Cable has been the driving force behind several campaigns against tax evasion. Embarrassing…

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