Corporate tax corruption and fraud in the UK: A critique of corporate criminal liability in practice

businessman hand holding magnifying glass looking at virtual document icons to represent tax fraud
Public lectures / seminars

Tuesday 21 May 2024

02:30 PM - 04:30 PM


JA105, Jaguar Building, Coventry University

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Event details

The seminar will discuss Corporate tax fraud and corruption and assessment of the efficacy of the law enforcement measures to counter them.


While corruption in the public sector has been covered widely, corporate tax fraud/evasion, tax related fraud enabling corruption or tax corruption enabling fraud in the private sector have been given scant attention. This study fills this gap by a critical analysis of the United Kingdom’s (UK) legal regime for these complex offences. It is argued that the different tax offences are unnecessary and the UK’s corporate criminal liability framework is ineffective for tax offences.

To date, HMRC has not prosecuted any corporations for corporate tax evasion under the Criminal Finances Act 2017. Recent cases reveal that the failure to prevent model under corporate criminal liability offers little value, and the use of Deferred Prosecution Agreements (DPAs) emphasises co-operation rather than prosecution of companies. Though holding corporations and individuals accountable is difficult under the current UK regime, it has its merits as a preventative governance tool when the DPAs contain the right incentives.


Dr. Umut Turksen is a Professor in Law at the Centre Financial and Corporate Integrity of Coventry University. Umut is a business-facing legal academic, and he is interested in the practical application of the law in risk, compliance and development for businesses. He has provided consultancy and training to prestigious international businesses and government projects on data protection, data security, data exchange and data managements.

He led the EU funded project "PROTAX," which focused on countering tax crimes in Europe and he is currently coordinating the EU funded project, TRACE, (https://trace- which aims to create technology based solutions (including AI) for investigation of illicit money flows. Umut is a partner in and responsible for legal, social and ethics impact of the EU funded project, KEYSTONE (, which focuses on standardisation of data management and data exchange and compliance across transport sectors and state authorities. In addition to his expertise in comparative risk and compliance across civil and common law jurisdictions, Umut is an expert in EU law and has published extensively on energy law and security, international trade law and development, and arbitration.