After a decade-long battle, media giant News Ltd has finally scored a win against the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) to its over more than A$2 billion ($2 billion) in tax deductions.
The Federal Court, through Justice Nye Perram, overruled an earlier decision by the ATO, noting the tax office had been excessive in the assessment of tax dues of the media company owned by Australian American media mogul Rupert Murdoch.
With this development, News Ltd can claim $2 billion in tax deductions.
The Australian units of the media giant claimed tax deductions in 2001 and 2002 of A$630 million and A$1.4 billion, respectively, for losses that were transferred to them from News Publishers Holdings Pty. The Australian Tax Office had rejected those claims.
"I accept the thrust of the taxpayers' case," Mr Perram said on Tuesday. "The assessments were excessive."
He likewise ordered ATO to cover News Ltd's costs.
News Ltd incurred the losses which were brought by a restructuring that began in 1989. It was then the holding, management and operating company for Mr Murdoch's media business.
That time, News Ltd. had negative A$239 million in capital and reserves.
Thirty companies associated with News were involved in the court action, including The Herald and Weekly Times, Nationwide News, HarperCollins Publishers, Mirror Newspapers and National Rugby League Investments, Rugby International.
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