The McLaren Formula One team have argued successfully in Britain that a record 32 million pound fine they paid after a 2007 spying controversy should be tax deductible.
McLaren had declared that the fine, originally set at $100 million (62 million pounds) but reduced by the loss of revenue resulting from being stripped of all their points in the constructors' championship, was 'connected' with its trade and should be exempt from corporation tax.
Government officials had claimed that the 'illicit gathering' of information was not a part of the team's trading activities.
The fine was imposed by Formula One's governing body, the International Automobile Federation led at the time by the controversial Max Mosley, after a dossier of Ferrari data was found in the possession of the team's then-chief designer Mike Coughlan.
"McLaren Group is a successful UK company, which provides high-quality employment and substantial tax revenue," A McLaren spokesman said at the South Korean Grand Prix on Friday.
"In 2007, McLaren Racing Ltd was required to pay a penalty, following a breach of the International Sporting Code of the FIA. After consideration, a Government tribunal has found that such a contractual penalty is tax-deductible."
The spokesman said McLaren would continue to comply with all relevant legislation as a British-registered company.
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