HMRC appoints new general counsel

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has appointed a new general counsel to replace the retiring Anthony Inglese.

gill aitken hmrc
Gill Aitken

The Department of Work & Pensions’ (DWP) director general of legal services, Gill Aitken, will take up the role at the end of January 2014.

Aitken was appointed to her post at the helm of the DWP legal team on 3 October 2011 after joining the team the previous year. Previously she worked as the director general for law and corporate services at the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs and was adviser to DWP and the Department of Health at the Government Legal Service.

Outgoing Inglese has headed up the 200-strong legal team at HMRC since March 2008 and has spent his entire 38-year legal career in public service (4 November 2013 ).

He spent five years as head of the Department of Trade & Industry’s legal team before becoming head of legal at HMRC and has headed up five legal teams in government departments over his career.

The HMRC legal team has been busy over the past couple of years as the Government’s crackdown on tax fraud has ramped up.

Inglese – who made The Lawyer’s Hot 100 this year (28 January 2013 ) – took the lead as several cases reached the Supreme Court, including an attempt to overturn a Court of Appeal decision concerning VAT payments made by the company that runs the Nectar card points scheme.

He made headlines in 2011 when MPs took the unusual step of making him swear an oath to tell the truth in an inquiry into tax deals negotiated by the HMRC with Vodafone and Goldman Sachs.