Experience and Expertise
Mark has a vigorous high level tax practice, appearing regularly in the Tax Tribunal, with the ability to take cases all the way to the European Court of Justice where appropriate. He has extensive experience of customs, excise, VAT, tax litigation involving offshore elements, the OECD model tax convention and tax enforcement.
For example, Mark recently represented the United Kingdom in the European Court of Justice in a customs classification case, known as Kubota, concerned with customs duty and the operation of the customs union. He also represented HMRC in the well-known case of Revenue & Customs v Ben Nevis in which the Court of Appeal upheld HMRC’s arguments regarding the proper approach to the interpretation of a double taxation treaty between the UK and South Africa.
Cases and Work of Note
- Kubota (C-545/2016) (Preliminary reference to the European Court of Justice concerning the classification of products under EU customs legislation.)
- Revenue & Customs v Smart  BPIR 1329 (Operation of the EU mutual assistance directive in the context of a bankruptcy petition relating to a tax debt. Clarifies whether the court can review the foreign claim on public policy grounds.)
- Savant Distribution v Revenue & Customs  UKFTT 533 (TC) (Customs classification of food supplements.)
- Alpine Electronics v Revenue & Customs  UKFTT 437 (TC) (Customs classification of electronic navigational products.)
- Atlas Property v Revenue & Customs  STI 2664 (Exempt VAT status of supplies of temporary accommodation.)
- Insectlore v Revenue & Customs  UKFTT 368 (TC) (Customs status of butterfly storage products.)
- Liquid Investments v Revenue & Customs  UKFTT 297 (TC) (Standing of a party to bring a tribunal appeal.)
- Revenue & Customs v Ben Nevis (Holdings) Ltd & Ors  STC 2157 and  WTLR 1 (Litigation concerning the interpretation of a double taxation treaty between the UK and South Africa and a judgment for in excess of £220 million in unpaid tax. Led by James Ayliffe QC.)
- Revenue and Customs v Ali  STC 42 (Authority in which it was determined that HMRC has sufficient right to support a freezing order where income tax assessments have been issued, but the obligation to pay tax sought under the assessments has not yet crystallised. Led by David Chivers QC.)
- Cadbury v Revenue & Customs  UKFTT 97 (TC) (Case concerning the availability of a VAT relief in respect of disabled persons.)
- Skillbond Direct Limited v Revenue and Customs  UKFTT 488 (TC) (Case concerning the availability of a preferential rate of customs duty on goods imported from Liechtenstein without presentation of proofs of origin.)
- Furukawa Electric Europe Limited v Revenue and Customs  UKFTT 129 (TC) (Decision concerning the classification for customs duty purposes of car components imported into the UK by a Japanese manufacturer.)
- Revenue and Customs v Harris  STI 3429 (Case concerning the status of an income tax closure notice and VAT assessments in the Bankruptcy Court.)
- Frontier Agriculture Limited v Revenue and Customs  UKFTT 834 (TC) (Decision concerning the classification for customs duty purposes of grain imported into the UK.)
- Advising and representing HM Revenue and Customs in relation to various pieces of insolvency, tax and commercial litigation arising from the decision of the High Court in Abbey Forwarding Ltd v Hone  EWHC 2029 (Ch).
- Maplin Electronics Limited v Revenue and Customs  UKFTT 143 (TC) (Decision concerning the classification for customs duty purposes of memory sticks imported by Maplin into the UK.)
- GE Medical Systems v Revenue and Customs  UKFTT 437 (TC) (Decision concerning the classification for customs duty purposes of medical equipment imported by GE into the UK.)