German court confirms sentences for ex-Deutsche Bank fraudsters | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 15.05.2018
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German court confirms sentences for ex-Deutsche Bank fraudsters

The 2016 verdicts handed down to ex-Deutsche Bank employees for their part in a sales tax fraud scheme have been largely confirmed by federal judges, meaning that one former manager faces a three-year jail term.

A former Deutsche Bank employee on Tuesday failed to see his three-year jail sentence revised by Germany's Federal Court of Justice.

In 2016, he and five other former Deutsche Bank workers were accused by prosecutors in Frankfurt of taking part in a scheme involving the trading of carbon emission permits.

The latter were designed to curb global warming, but were used to fraudulently collect tens of millions of euros of sales taxes.

The case stemmed from an investigation into so-called carousel trades in the European Union's carbon market in 2009 and 2010 in which some buyers imported emissions permits into an EU country without paying value-added tax.

Gauging the economic damage

The buyers then sold the permits to each other, adding VAT to the price and generating tax refunds when no tax had been paid at all.

Prosecutors said the scheme had been run purely to trick the tax authorities out of about €200 million ($238 million).

The court trial followed a years-long probe that involved trawling millions of emails and thousands of recorded telephone conversations.

Responding to the accusations raised at the trial, Deutsche Bank had said it had repaid the tax, changed its internal monitoring processes and parted with the staff involved.

Tuesday's ruling by the Federal Court of Justice also confirmed suspended jail sentences for three other ex-Deutsche Bank staff.

Only one former employee saw his suspended prison term lifted for lack of proof that he deliberately supported the fraudulent scheme.

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