‘Mrs Brown’s Boys’ stars ‘diverted £2m’ into off-shore tax avoidance scheme

Their fees for the show were transferred offshore.

Three leading actors from popular BBC sitcom Mrs Brown’s Boys reportedly avoided more than £2 million in tax after putting their earnings in an offshore scheme.

Documents from the newly-leaked Paradise Papers reportedly reveal how stars Patrick Houlihan, Fiona Delany, and Martin Delany transferred their fees to companies in Mauritius before sending money back as loans.

They were reportedly made aware of the scheme by account Roy Lyness, who previously advised Jimmy Carr to take part in a similar set-up before the comedian came under intense criticism in July 2012.  

At the time, Carr’s tax dealings were described as “morally wrong” by Prime Minister David Cameron, before he subsequently withdrew from the scheme.

Patrick Houlihan has also been accused of tax avoidance

Houlihan has since responded, admitting that he was not fully aware of what the scheme entailed.

The actor, who plays the son of Brendan O’Carroll’s titular matriarch, told the Irish Times: “You never knew what the fuck was going on.”

Fiona and Martin Delany, who respectively play Maria Brown and Trevor Brown on the show, are yet to respond.

The Paradise Papers consists of 1.4 terabytes of documents and comes directly from the company registries of 19 tax havens and two offshore service providers.

Martin and Fiona Delany transferred their money into an off shore fund

Earlier today, the tax affairs of Bono also came under scrutiny, after the Paradise Papers revealed that he used a company based in Malta to invest in a Lithuanian shopping centre.

The U2 frontman used a company based in Malta, a famously low-tax jurisdiction, to pay for a £5.1 million share in the Ausra Shopping Centre in 2007.

 According to the newly-leaked documents, he was a direct investor in the Maltese company Nude Estates, which purchased the shopping centre before transferring ownership to Nude Estates 1, a company based in low-tax Guernsey.
The singer has categorically denied wrongdoing, with a subsequent statement describing him as “a passive, minority investor”.