Major accused of 'royal tax break'

John Major is expected to face questioning today over a claim that the treasury allowed the Prince of Wales a pounds 125,000 tax break shortly before his income became officially liable to taxation. According to a Whitehall official, any agreement involving the Royal Family's tax affairs would have to be personally approved by Mr Major.

Alan Williams, Labour MP for Swansea West, who spotted the alleged deal in a footnote to the Duchy of Cornwall accounts for the year ending 31 December 1992, said last night: 'This is the royal equivalent to paying your electricity bill in advance before the VAT man arrives.'

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