Tories take £1.5 million from controversial hedge fund guru

A top hedge fund guru whose tax affairs have been scrutinised in the past has given £1.5 million to the Conservative Party, new figures from the Electoral Commission can reveal.

A top hedge fund guru whose tax affairs have been scrutinised in the past has given £1.5 million to the Conservative Party this year, new figures from the Electoral Commission can reveal.

Michael Hintze, whose hedge fund empire CQS reportedly paid just £77,000 in corporation tax in 2010 despite annual earnings of £125 million, has given £2.975 million to the Tory Party since 2002, with a £1.5 million donation in the first quarter of 2014.

Hintze has given a total of £93,200 to individual Conservative MPs, including £37,500 to chancellor George Osborne. He also loaned the party £2,500,000 through his investment trust, Morain Investments, before the 2005 general election.

Hintze’s company CQS handles £5.5 billion worth of investments around the world and pays its UK staff salaries of £125 million. However while licensed to operate in the UK, Hintze’s high-earning traders are officially registered to the company’s off-shore operation in Jersey, meaning the government is potentially losing out on millions of pounds in income and employment taxes.

Hintze’s latest £1.5 million pound donation is 19 times more than the corporation tax reportedly paid by CQS in 2010.

Hintze was also named during the so-called ‘cash for access’ scandal in March 2012, where several attendees at a private dinner with David Cameron were donors who had given more than £50,000 to the Tory Party.

Michael Hintze is also a financial supporter of the Global Warming Policy Foundation, an organisation that regularly casts doubt on the science and cost of climate change.

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