Wednesday, February 20, 2019

UBS Fined $4.2 Billion for Its French Foreign Account Escapades Raiding France of Taxes (2/20/19)

Liz Alderman, French Court Fines UBS $4.2 Billion for Helping Clients Evade Taxes (NYT 2/20/19), here.

The lavish spending caught up with UBS on Wednesday, when French judges ordered it to pay a record 3.7 billion euro fine, about $4.2 billion, for carrying out what prosecutors said was a long-running scheme to help French clients hide huge sums of money from the authorities. 
The penalty, the largest in French history, included €800 million to be paid to the government, which said it had lost revenue as a result of UBS’s helping French citizens evade taxes from 2004 to 2012. 
UBS said in a statement that it “strongly disagrees with the verdict” and that it planned to appeal. “The bank has consistently contested any criminal wrongdoing,” the statement said, adding that the judgment was “not supported by any concrete evidence.” 
The ruling coincides with crackdowns on tax evasion in France and other countries that have put Swiss banks in particular on the defensive. 
UBS paid a $780 million fine in the United States in 2009 to resolve accusations that it had helped rich clients dodge taxes, and pledged to divulge the names of over 4,450 people with Swiss bank accounts. Credit Suisse was fined $2.6 billion by the Justice Department in 2014, and €300 million by France in 2017 in similar cases

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