STEP: Swiss banks apologise for helping tax evasion - Spear's Magazine

STEP: Swiss banks apologise for helping tax evasion

The industry’s chief spokesperson, Swiss Bankers Association President Patrick Odier, admitted at a news conference this week that the policy has ‘damaged the reputation of the entire Swiss financial centre’

The Swiss banking industry has made a frank apology for its past actions in helping international clients evade taxes.

The last few months have seen at least 14 of the leading banks facing possible prosecution by the US Department of Justice (USDoJ). Some 100 other banks are begging the Swiss government for permission to pay enormous penalties to the USDoJ, in an effort to avoid criminal charges for abetting tax evasion. At the same time the Swiss government has been forced to water down its tradition of legally enforced banking secrecy by accepting wide-ranging tax information exchange agreements.

The banks have all declared that they only accept ‘clean money’ from tax-compliant clients, but to some extent their repentance has come too late. The industry’s chief spokesperson, Swiss Bankers Association President Patrick Odier, admitted at a news conference this week that the policy has ‘damaged the reputation of the entire Swiss financial centre’.

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