Italy: Motorcycle champion Rossi accused of tax fraud

It has been reported that motorcycle champion Valentino Rossi is under investigation of the Italian state tax agency. It appears that Rossi had already in 2000 taken up residence in the United Kingdom and was subject to UK tax as a resident non-domiciled taxpayer. Effectively this meant that e.g. income earned outside the United Kingdom which was not remitted to the United Kingdom was not subject to income tax in either Italy or the United Kingdom. The amounts involved are apparently in the range of 60 million EUR. Although the reasoning of the Italian tax authorities was not published, it could be that they intend to question the true residence of Rossi in the United Kingdom. Rossi already indicated that he is travelling the world for 7 months per year, and also that he does spent time in Italy to visit relatives, friends and for holiday purposes.

There could also be a political element in the enquiries: the Italian governments tax chief Mr. reportedly observed publicly that ? a more or less fictitious residence in London allows you not to pay taxes in your own country?.