The Bournemouth Echo reports that HMRC are conducting an "urgent" inquiry after a parcel containing 42 private companies' tax returns was delivered to Michael Hodge, a former mayor of Christchurch and by happenstance ex HMRC fraud investigator.
The 42 firms are SMEs based based around Surrey, Kent and Essex. Seemingly the documents, despite the parcel being labelled for Mr Hodge, were destined for a storage centre.
The documents included annual accounts, tax returns and accountants' letters; dealt with by Croydon tax office.
According to the Echo Mr Hodge was not that impressed with the lack lustre "enthusiasm" from HMRC, for looking into this cock up, when he reported it to them.
HMRC only began to take an interest when Mr Hodge told them that he would contact the Echo.
Lisa Billard of HMRC is quoted:
"We take customer security very seriously and no data has been lost in this incident.
Our parcel was correctly addressed, but it would appear that a label from another package (not an HMRC package) had become attached to it within the postal system meaning that the courier company delivered it to the wrong address.
HMRC have collected the parcel and can confirm its contents are intact. We have raised the matter with the delivery company."
Tax does have to be taxing.
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