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Subject Crocodile Dundee Paul Hogan not allowed to leave Australia until he pays his tax bill, $37 million
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Original Message Paul Hogan has been prevented from leaving the country because of alleged tax debts.

The Crocodile Dundee star's lawyers said he returned to Australia last week for his mother's funeral and was served a departure prohibition order, stopping him from leaving until the disputed sum is paid or settled.

''He is stunned and very disappointed that the government could treat him as a flight risk,'' Paul Robinson, from Robinson Legal, said in a statement.

''Paul continues to vehemently deny any wrongdoing. The process of detaining [him] away from his wife and child in Los Angeles has devastated Paul,'' the statement said.

The departure prevention order has reportedly been served under the Tax Administration Act. The Tax Office said that it could not comment on individual taxpayers.

But his solicitors said it was a move by the Tax Office to gain leverage in talks with the actor.

They are hoping to resolve the issue quickly, although the actor has been under the spotlight of the Tax Office and the Australian Crime Commission for years.

His lawyers said that after five years of ''intrusive investigations no charges have been laid''. ''He hopes that discussions between us and the ATO will lead to a prompt resolution allowing him to return to his family, and thereafter to travel to and from Australia as his personal and business needs require.

[link to www.smh.com.au]
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