Legal: Thousands of clients at Luxembourg’s state savings bank have have filed dubious tax claims, according to German media reports.
The German state of Nordrhein-Westfalen has purchased a CD allegedly containing details of tax fraud amounting to millions of euros by clients of Banque et caisse d’épargne de l’État, the Grand Duchy’s state savings bank, media in Germany said over the weekend.
Investigators reportedly paid €5m for the records of more than 50,000 accounts, according to Der Spiegel, a German magazine, which also cited reports by the newspapers Handelsblatt and Süddeutsche Zeitung in its coverage.
The records supposedly reveal €70bn in phony business transactions between 2006 and 2011, including the double deduction of capital gains tax, which led to unjustified tax refunds. The data is being investigated by the Wuppertal tax bureau and Cologne public prosecutor’s office.
BCEE said it would file a complaint with authorities in the Grand Duchy. “If it were found that bank details were leaked it would be a flagrant violation of Luxembourg law”, the bank said in a statement. It also stressed that its practices comply with Luxembourg and EU banking rules.
This is the ninth tax CD that Nordrhein-Westfalen authorities have purchased in recent years. The previous eight have led to the recovery of €2bn in back taxes and fines, said Der Spiegel. Using the same method, tax authorities across Germany have caught around 120,000 German tax evaders since 2010, leading to the recovery of €5bn.