General News

Russell Brand blasts Topshop owner over tax

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Nov 06, 2013 | 8:10am EST

British funnyman Russell Brand has taken aim at the owner of U.K. fashion chain Topshop and accused him of corporate tax avoidance. The Get Him to the Greek star has sparked a political debate in his native Britain after revealing last month (Oct13) that he refuses to vote in elections as he has no faith in the system. Brand furthered his call for a "revolution" in an article for The Guardian newspaper this week (beg04Nov13), in which he takes aim at multi-millionaire Sir Philip Green over his previous tax scandals. Brand writes, "Philip Green, the bloke who owns Top Shop (sic) didn't pay any income tax on a £1.2 billion dividend in 2005. None. Unless he paid himself a salary that year, in addition to the £1.2 billion dividend, the largest in corporate history, then the people who clean Top Shop paid more income tax than he did. "That's for two reasons - firstly because he said that all of his £1.2 billion earnings belong to his missus (wife), who was registered in Monaco, and secondly because he's an a**ehole. The money... would pay the annual salary for 20,000 NHS (National Health Service) nurses. It's not illegal; it's systemic, British people who voted, voted for it. I'm not voting for that."

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