German prosecutors raided all 13 Credit Suisse (CS) branches in the country on Wednesday as part of a probe into tax fraud.
Nearly 150 tax officials were searching branches in German cities. Earlier this year, German authorities acquired a compact disc containing information on some 1,500 Credit Suisse customers who may have deposited assets into Swiss accounts to avoid taxes. Prosecutors are also investigating allegations that bank staff assisted clients in evading taxes.
In March, German prosecutors launched 1,100 tax evasion probes of Credit Suisse clients on suspicion of tax evasion. The tax authorities are going after some 400 million euros ($544.5 million) worth of allegedly unpaid taxes. Germany paid 2.5 million euros for the CD with the stolen data, despite protests from Switzerland.
In 2008, Germany acquired information on its citizens' secret bank accounts in the principality of Liechtenstein, which led to the recovery of around 200 million euros in unpaid taxes and the arrest of the head of the logistics group Deutsche Post, the AFP reports.
Germany is not the only country going after Swiss banks and other tax havens. In June, UBS (UBS) finally received parliamentary approval to hand over confidential data on some 4,500 suspected American tax offenders to U.S. officials. Prior to that, UBS had handed over the names of around 250 individuals to the U.S. and paid a $780 million fine.
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