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Carr 'morally wrong' on tax says PM
Jimmy Carr has been branded "morally wrong" by Prime Minister David Cameron for seeking to avoid taxes.
The funnyman is said to have used an aggressive - but legal - tax-avoidance scheme which enables members to pay income tax rates as low as 1%.
The Prime Minister made the comment to ITV News after Jimmy broke his silence over the controversy, apparently insisting: "I pay what I have to and not a penny more."
Reports of Jimmy's tax arrangements suggest he is undertaking "straightforward tax avoidance", said the Prime Minister.
He added: "I think some of these schemes - and I think particularly of the Jimmy Carr scheme - I have had time to read about and I just think this is completely wrong.
"People work hard, they pay their taxes, they save up to go to one of his shows. They buy the tickets. He is taking the money from those tickets and he, as far as I can see, is putting all of that into some very dodgy tax avoiding schemes.
"That is wrong. There is nothing wrong with people planning their tax affairs to invest in their pension and plan for their retirement - that sort of tax management is fine. But some of these schemes we have seen are quite frankly morally wrong."
Jimmy, who has famously lampooned fat cat bankers, reportedly protects some £3.3 million a year by channelling cash through Jersey-based company K2 which then returns the money in the form of a loan. This is not subject to income tax.
It has also been alleged that Gary Barlow, Howard Donald, Mark Owen and Take That manager Jonathan Wild had invested at least £26 million in a scheme run by Icebreaker Management Services.