HMRC Chief Executive, Lin Homer, said that she deserved the £20,000 bonus she received on top of her £185,000 salary last year, and that she wasn’t awarded it due to an error.

She received the incentive despite overseeing a £1.9 billion miscalculation where tax officials overstated the amount of extra revenue they were collecting.

The latest HMRC accounts also show that £120,000 in further bonuses was awarded to other top executives, including Jim Harra, the director general of business tax; Nick Lodge, the director general of benefits and credits; Jennie Grainger, the director general of enforcement and compliance; and Ruth Owen, the director general of personal tax.

HMRC admitted that it had set tax collection targets too low, meaning that officials claimed to have overshot their goals by billions, when it was actually only surpassed by £100 million.

Ms Homer says this had no effect on the awarding of bonuses.

She told the Commons Public Accounts Committee:

“We have tried to make sure we are rewarding a very good performance from a number of people. I’m confident the bonuses that were given out were deserved. I don’t feel that anything we’ve explained to you has warranted any review of that.”

She has received much criticism from parliament in the past due to her “catastrophic leadership failure” as head of the UK Border Agency.

MPs said they were “astounded” when she was appointed her position at HMRC.

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