Speaking on the Pienaar’s Politics programme on BBC Radio 5 Live, Steadman commented: “I think it’s quite disgusting.” He added: “But I’m also aware of how quickly you can change as a person, not that it forgives you. But I’d be lying if I said I’m going to be like this my whole life, because I’m sure the Arctic Monkeys when they were young boys in Sheffield and you asked them this question would say ‘absolutely not, this is horrific’, but the things that have happened to them and what they’ve been thrown into has definitely had a huge effect on them.”
He continued, stating that he would always pay his taxes, and added that the acts that have been named in tax-avoidance schemes are “incredibly greedy”. Steadman said: “I live in this country and I use services like the NHS, and these services need money from people that use them. So I will always pay my taxes.”
When asked by presenter John Pienaar why he thought his attitude wouldn’t change, Steadman continued: “I didn’t say that it couldn’t happen, but I don’t think I will be in the same situation as the Arctic Monkeys – in terms of success and money. I think once you start earning those sizes of income you just become incredibly greedy and you always want more.”
All four members of Arctic Monkeys and George Michael were among a number of public figures recently said to have invested in Britain’s latest high-profile tax-avoidance schemes.
Investors in the Liberty tax strategy revealed by The Times included the Sheffield band as well as singer Katie Melua and actor Sir Michael Caine. Arctic Monkeys are reported to have each paid between £38,000 and £84,000 in fees to Liberty to protect £557,000 to £1.1m between 2005 and 2009.
When approached by NME today (July 21), a spokesperson for Arctic Monkeys said the band are refusing to comment on the story.