Credit Suisse snared in worldwide tax probe

  • Credit Suisse snared in worldwide tax probe

Credit Suisse snared in worldwide tax probe

The national tax administration said in a statement Friday that it suspects several million euros worth of funds were hidden from authorities.

In cooperation with authorities in a number of countries, raids were done in the Netherlands, Switzerland, Australia, Germany, Great Britain and France on Thursday.

More actions were likely in the coming weeks, it said in a statement.

Credit Suisse is at the centre of an worldwide tax probe after the Swiss bank's offices in London, Paris and Amsterdam were searched as part of a series of linked investigations across five countries.

Australia's minister for revenue and financial services, Kelly O'Dwyer, said the country's financial crime investigator was looking at 340 Australians linked to Swiss bank accounts, which she said were only identified by number.

"The Office of the Attorney General of Switzerland is disconcerted about the manner in which this has been organized with the conscious non-inclusion of Switzerland".

"If the Swiss authorities wish to receive information on the investigation, we, the other countries involved and Eurojust, are always willing to discuss with them", said Marieke van der Molen, spokeswoman for the Dutch public prosecutor's office. The bank is cooperating with authorities as they conducts the probes.

The probes represent a challenge for Chief Executive Officer Tidjane Thiam as he reshapes Credit Suisse to focus on wealth management and weighs options to increase capital depleted by fines for past misbehavior.

Credit Suisse's next scandal has emerged: the bank is at the center of a Dutch-led tax investigation to root out millions held in an offshore Swiss bank account.

The UK tax inspection body, HMRC, confirmed that it had launched "a criminal investigation into suspected tax evasion and money-laundering by a global financial institution and certain of its employees". Two people were detained for interrogation.

"The suspects with undeclared savings in the above-mentioned countries all deposited their money in the same Swiss bank", the Dutch authorities said in a statement. The leader of the tax probe into Credit Suisse Group AG (ADR) is the Netherlands' FIOD, which handles financial investigations.

"We have implemented the Dutch and French voluntary tax disclosure programs and exited non-compliant clients". The Dutch government passed this information on to the relevant countries, according to Reuters.