Or not so shocking given how corrupt the whole fucking lot of them are. It seems they just bribed a bank employee in Lichtenstein with an undisclosed fee (guessed at by reporters as half a million pounds). In exchange for the reddies, the dirty bugger has coughed up a load of information on accounts held by British citizens so that HMRC can then chase them for taxes "to which it is entitled".
They are also quoted as saying that it was seeking “to protect the UK exchequer from those who seek to hide behind secrecy laws”. So, let’s get this straight – they’re saying with that last sentence that they’re aware laws exist, and they ignored (and let’s face it, broke) those laws to get information to which they were not entitled.
Now, excuse me if I put my amateur lawman’s hat on here… but isn’t information gained by unlawful means inadmissible in court? Which means that can’t then legally challenge these individuals for the tax they "owe"? Ever. From my viewpoint, they’ve effectively screwed up any hope they have of charging these people with tax evasion as they now have all the information they required… but illegally. There is no more information they can obtain, all they have is tainted and unuseable… so they’ve done these people a massive favour and set their minds at ease as they’re not safe from prosecution.
I also resent the “to which it is entitled” bit. As a citizen of the UK I feel I’m entitled to a working NHS; to a police force that has the power to prosecute criminals and put them away instead of letting them out after 14 days; to my own privacy; to feel safe walking the streets; to a world-class education system from infant to degree level at no charge; to be able to see a doctor at a time that is convenient to me; likewise a dentist; to have people running my country who don’t give all the cushy tax-dodging jobs to their friends and relatives…
Nothing unreasonable there. I don’t feel that I’m getting any of that. In fact, we seem to be paying more taxes for less return than we ever have in the past. So I say "fuck you, UK government" and I’ll be seriously looking for the other two states which class as "uncooperative tax havens" should I ever earn a decent wage.
Assuming I don’t just bugger off to another country where I feel I’m getting better value from the party in power.