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David Cameron refuses to comment on Gary Barlow 'tax shelter'

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Prime Minister David Cameron has refused to be drawn on the controversy surrounding Gary Barlow's reported tax avoidance scheme.

Take That stars Barlow, Howard Donald and Mark Owen are said to have invested a total of £26 million in a tax shelter.

British Prime Minister David Cameron arrives for an EU summit at the EU Council in Brussels, Wednesday, May 23, 2012.

© PA Images / Geert Vanden Wijngaert/AP

Former Take That singer Gary Barlow seen leaving the May Fair hotel in London

© WENN / Manuil Yamalyan



However, Cameron - who has already condemned Jimmy Carr's tax arrangements - chose not to comment on Barlow, who recently received an OBE.

Speaking at a Downing Street press conference today, the PM said: "I am not going to give a running commentary on different people's tax affairs. I don't think that would be right.

"I made an exception because it was a very specific case where the details seemed to have been published and it was a particularly egregious example of an avoidance scheme that seemed to me to be wrong and I made that point."

Jimmy Carr

© Rex Features / Roderick Barker-Benfield

Howard Donald, Gary Barlow, and Mark Owen from Take That with the PRS For Music Outstanding Contribution to British Music award at the 2012 Ivor Novello awards held at the Grosvenor House Hotel, London

© PA Images / Ian West/PA Wire



Shadow Leader of the House of Commons Angela Eagle argued: "Oddly, [Mr Cameron] did not take the opportunity to condemn as morally repugnant the tax avoidance scheme used by Conservative supporter Gary Barlow, who has given a whole new meaning to the phrase Take That.

"If he is also morally repugnant, why has he been given an OBE in the Birthday Honours? Why is the Prime Minister's view of what's dodgy in the tax system so partial? Sir Philip Green has interesting tax arrangements but far from being labelled morally repugnant in a Mexico TV studio, he has got a Government review to head up."

Comedian Jimmy Carr apologised on Twitter for being the biggest beneficiary of the K2 scheme in Jersey.

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