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U.K. Begins Tax-Evasion Probe With Focus on Lawyers, Hair Salons

U.K. began a crackdown on tax evasion, including among London lawyers, which it expects to bring in 19.5 million pounds ($32 million).

HM Revenue & Customs task forces starting today will focus on five “high risk” business areas in an effort to flush out tax evaders, the authority said in a press release. The Scottish motor trade and retail businesses in four U.K. regions are being targeted in the latest project, the agency said.

“This is not an empty threat -- HMRC can and will track you down if you choose to break the rules,” said Mike Eland, the agency’s enforcement and compliance chief.

The task forces were introduced following a 917 million-pound government investment that began in 2011 to take on tax evasion, avoidance and fraud. The authority said it intends to raise 7 billion pounds each year by 2015 from the project.

Restaurants in southeast England and hair and beauty salons in the northeast of the country are also under scrutiny.

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