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  • Robert M Robert M Jan 25, 2012 09:00 Flag

    Dirty Harry & Corrupt FA

    1. I think it's up to Spurs how they see fit to respond to a successful prosecution.
    2. I don't believe there is any case to punish Portsmouth for what is alleged to have happened. It's obviously nothing to do with THFC.
    3. It's not a bung, it seems, in the George Gaham sense of the word. However, I don't think it's quite as simple as it's all Pompey FC's fault for not deducting it in his PAYE. There's an offshore account in a tax-haven here, in 'Arry's name, or his dog's, or something. Now, normally there's only one reason to have accounts in tax havens and that's to avoid paying tax. Many people with international lifestyles can do this quite legally as they manage to make themselves scarce most of the time to avoid paying income taxes in any one jurisdiction. My guess is that 'Arry can't do this as he is a UK citizen, lives and works full-tme in the UK and so is subject to UK income taxes for all his UK earnings.

    Most of us are employees who have tax paid under PAYE. Most of us don't earn millions and don't have our salary paid into offshore accounts. The particular transactions here look less like a monthly salary and more like a business transaction between manager and chairman. Nothing wrong with that, probably, but it does rather mean that 'Arry can't play innocent and claim he knew nothing about an account in his name, or didn' realise tax hadn't been paid. The law of the country says that it is his responsibility, and his responsibility alone, to declare all his earnings to HMRC. If he doesn't submit a tax return that shows several hundred thousand pounds of taxable income that has been sent directly abroad then that is an offence.

    My guess is he's going down.


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    • I'd agree with that. Spurs have no legal or moral reason to have to get rid of Harry right now. If convicted they might be forced if a prison term is imposed, but if only a fine, there is no reason that Spurs should not continue to employee him. It’s up to them to decide whether they continue to employee someone convicted of tax evasion (assuming he's found guilty). Plenty of companies do, and its not as if he's employed as an accountant, he's employed as a football manager a job he's very good at. The only question mark is the PR message that sends out, and since Harry is a media darling, unless this case really digs up some dirt I doubt his reputation will be harmed that much. Tarnished maybe, but far from ruined.

      Whether it’s Portsmouth or Manderic maybe a fine line and come down to if the payment was from the Chairman as an individual or as the representative of the club. As I understand it the payment is being described as a bonus, so it should have come from the club, but it’s not the clubs fault if Manderic made the payment by himself from his own accounts rather than the clubs. The only time I think the club would have liability is if it was paid from a club account, or an account Manderic controlled on behalf of the club, and they did not ensure taxation was accounted for.

      But I do agree it was not a bung based on what I understand the definition of a bung is. The question would have to be what did Manderic (or the club) get out of Harry if it was a bung? He was their employee, so there would be no reason to offer him payments unless it was for some activity outside his job description. Before you can call it a bung I think you have to identify what that activity was. Personally I think the word bung is being thrown around as it’s a better headline that not paying full taxes on a bonus.