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HMRC internal manual

Excise Civil Evasion Penalty

Liability to an excise civil evasion penalty: permanent deprivation

The decision given by the Court of Appeal in the VAT case of Regina v Dealy [1995] 1 W.L.R. 658 confirmed that permanent deprivation is not an ingredient of a criminal offence of fraudulent evasion.

‘Why ever should the Crown have to prove a permanent intention to deprive? The legislature are perfectly capable of putting those words in a statute if they want to. To imply the words would only add to the difficulties of the prosecution in proving their case. They would constantly have to meet suggestions that there was an intention to pay in the end, just as there was here, even though we are bound to say that the case for the prosecution was overwhelming. Why should such words be implied? The word “evasion”, does not, to our mind, imply any sense of permanence.’

By implication then, the intent to deprive permanently is also not an ingredient of civil evasion, and proof of such an intention is not needed to uphold an allegation of dishonest evasion.