€4m tax bill for Joe show promoters

The promotions firm once headed by the late entertainer Joe Dolan has been hit with a bill of almost €4 million in unpaid tax and penalties.

Monroe Mullingar Ltd, which was dissolved last year following the death of the legendary singer, but which in the past listed Joe and his brother Ben as directors, paid €3.8 million to the taxman.

While almost €1.8 million of the settlement was in tax, just over €2 million was paid in interest and penalties, following an investigation by the Revenue. The settlements were made for the underdeclaration of income tax, PAYE/PRSI, and VAT.

The entertainer’s brother Ben Dolan, from Lynn Road in Mullingar, also made a separate settlement of just over €279,500 for the underdeclaration of income tax and capital gains tax, of which €115,500 was in tax and almost €164,000 in interest and penalties.

The figures came to light in the latest round of listed tax defaulters from the Revenue Commissioners, with the settlement by Monroe Mullingar Ltd the largest published by the Revenue for the period from January to March 2009.

The promotions company was responsible for organising many of the concerts played by Joe Dolan and his band, of which Ben was also a member, over their 47 years playing together. It was controlled by the brothers up to Joe’s death in December 2007.

Speaking earlier this week, Ben Dolan said that he and Joe had been on the receiving end of poor financial advice in the past, and that the amounts in question related to foreign earnings.

He added that they had paid ‘retention tax’ in countries including the US, England, Russia, and South Africa, with tax taken from their earnings before they were paid.

"It wasn't a matter of us trying to fiddle the taxman. This has happened to thousands of people in Ireland. It was on the tours.

"I am not blaming the banks. I am not blaming the Government. I am not blaming anybody. There was an awful lot of work that we did abroad so it was our money abroad,” said Mr Dolan.

According to this latest list of tax defaulters, between January and March 2009, settlements were made to a total value of €32 million, with nine of these exceeding €1 million.

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