Homes have been raided and the
names of some middle-order law firms have been paraded. But there’s a
surprising silence surrounding one obvious aspect of the latest
much-insinuated tax fraud – which accountants are involved? While it
may be more fashionable for the rich and famous to have tax lawyers
rather than mere accountants, it would be a most extraordinary thing if
bean counters are not involved.

And they have been. I hear some
major firms are waiting nervously for this particular second boot to
drop. Indeed, one might well think the lawyer involvement in the
outright rort suggested by the ATO is more likely to be through
participation, rather than orchestration. It has all the hallmarks of
just the sort of dumb scheme that would capture m’learned friends.
Anyone for horse breeding while we’re at it?

The official line
paints a picture of a scheme that can’t be helped by any tax lawyer –
it’s straight fraud and no amount of horse hair or precedent can change
it. Far more likely for the promotion of such activity among
professionals to be in the hands of accountants. The trouble with
landing them, though, is that they might know enough about what they’ve
been doing to keep their fingerprints off the evidence.

Could it
be too fanciful to wonder whether the official heat has been turned on
a few mere lawyers in an attempt to get some incriminating pencil
sharpenings on the bean counters?