HMRC has said that it brought in £24bn in unpaid tax due to its tougher tax stance  Reuters

The HMRC's tougher stance on tax avoidance looks to have paid dividends after it managed to raise almost £24bn in additional tax for the tax year which ended in March.

The government's tax body said that the upsurge in unpaid tax revenues was due to "increased activity" on its behalf as it managed to rake in a record breaking £23.9bn (€29.5bn, $40.3bn) from those who skipped on their taxes – increasing its overall income by 15% on the previous year.

The figure is almost £1bn more than the target set in its Autumn Statement by Chancellor George Osborne.

Exchequer secretary to the Treasury David Gauke said this was a warning to all tax avoiders which should be heeded. "HMRC will pursue those seeking to avoid their responsibilities and will collect the taxes that are due," said Gauke.

"The government is determined to tackle the minority that seek to avoid paying the taxes they owe."

In the 2012/13 year, 119,000 people were investigated by HMRC. However, this doubled to 237,215 for the tax year just ended as the government looks to narrow the 'tax gap', with the number of prosecutions rising from 477 to 690, according to Citywire.

It said that more than £1bn came from criminals, over £8bn from large businesses and a further £2.7bn from tackling tax avoiders in courts.

HMRC expects to bring in more than £100bn before March 2015, which includes the sums it has collected since its crackdown began in May 2010, as a result of the investigations. It now says it will increase its efforts further as it hopes to bring in a further £24.5bn before April 2015, and a further £26.3bn the following year.