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New tax CD

July 22, 2010

German tax authorities have been offered yet another CD with information regarding German tax evaders, according to a newspaper report. This CD, the seventh offered recently, involves the known tax haven Liechtenstein.

A business man hides francs in his suit
The report says some 500 million euros are hidden in LLBImage: Bilderbox

A report in Thursday's Sueddeutsche Zeitung (SZ) says that German tax authorities have been offered a CD containing information on German tax evaders who allegedly have hidden some 500 million euros ($640 million) in Liechtenstein, a notorious tax haven.

The report stated that the authorities in the northern state of Schleswig Holstein are planning to buy the CD, which was created anonymously with technically stolen bank records from Liechtenstein's second largest financial institution, the Liechtensteinische Landesbank (LLB) located in the capital Vaduz.

Before purchasing the stolen data, however, the Schleswig Holstein authorities want a sample of the CD to ensure its value.

The report said it was not known how much the CD would be purchased for and that the identity of the seller remained unknown.

Credit Suisse
One of the CDs led to a raid on a German branch of Credit Suisse earlier this monthImage: picture-alliance/dpa

Growing trend

German states are cracking down on those who seek to avoid paying their taxes and have showed greater willingness to purchase such illegally-made discs.

According to the SZ report, state authorities in Germany are currently negotiating - or have purchased - seven tax CDs.

The most cases are in Germany's most populous state, North-Rhine Westphalia, but also include Lower Saxony, Baden-Wuertemberg, and now Schleswig-Holstein.

As a result, the number of Germans who have turned themselves in for tax evasion has skyrocketed, with some 20,000 such cases being recorded since February.

Experts predict that this could result in a surplus of up to one billion euros in government coffers.

Author: Gabriel Borrud (AFP/dpa)
Editor: Rob Turner

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