Dolce and Gabbana get suspended sentence for tax dodge, financial planners get one-year reprieve and iiNet pays hefty ACCC fine: Midday roundup

Dolce and Gabbana have made headlines for all the wrong reasons today. The design duo, Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana have been sentenced for tax evasion and fined €500,000 ($713,003).

The pair are appealing the 20-month suspended sentence, which was handed down by an Italian court, for the tax evasion of €200 million.

Dolce and Gabbana were accused of setting up a Luxembourg-based “shell” company, Gado, to dodge tax payment in Italy. Neither designer attended the sentencing. It is believed the fine is just a first instalment of a fine that could reach a whopping €10 million.

Financial planners still exempt

The federal government has bowed to pressure and will extend the exemption for financial planners to become registered tax agents under the Tax Agent Services Act bill by one year.

The government is expected to table a bill enacting the change today.

The bill imposes qualification and education requirements for those giving tax advice and was introduced in 2010.

The Financial Planning Association had claimed the industry faced costs of $1 billion to comply in time for the original start date of July 1.

iiNet slammed with $102,000 fine for naked ad

iiNet has paid $102,000 to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission for a Naked DSL ad which ran on the back of a Sydney bus.
The consumer watchdog said in a statement it had reasonable grounds to believe the ad failed to prominently state the total minimal price for the service.

iiNet is the first publicly-listed company to pay a fine for the alleged breach of Australian Consumer Law.

Shares fall on open

Australian shares have plummeted this morning on the back of falls on Wall Street and the United States Federal Reserve decision to hasten cuts to its stimulus package.

The S&P/ASX 200 benchmark was down 95.3 points to 4766.1 just after midday and the energy sector had fallen 254.4 points to 12,623.3.

The Dow Jones closed 1.35% lower overnight, down 206.04 points to 15,112.19.

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