Cyprus Mail

‘Lagarde List’ accounts face €35mln in taxes (updated)

Some €35mln in taxes have been imposed on undeclared deposits in 85 Swiss bank accounts included in the so-called Lagarde List, Finance Minister Harris Georgiades said on Tuesday.

Speaking before the House Watchdog and Ethics Committees, the minister said the tax concerns 88 cases linked to 85 accounts.

The tax is for the year 2003, the minister said. He added that tax could be imposed for later years also.

No money has been collected yet, the minister said, adding that taxpayers have the right of appeal.

The list includes around 500 names of individuals and companies with deposits at HSBC Switzerland.

Georgiades said the list included the profiles of 490 companies and individuals, Cypriot and foreign, who were linked to Cyprus. Eighty-seven do not appear to be linked to an account while 403 were connected to 361 accounts, which in their peak, held €827mln.

“Eighty-eight taxpayers have been taxed,” he said.

The minister said transferring money and keeping deposits abroad was legal as long as they had been declared.

French police obtained the list, nicknamed the Lagarde List after France’s former finance minister and current managing director of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, from an ex-technician at the bank in 2009.

The former HSBC worker attempted to sell the data, which he obtained a few years earlier, to the governments of other European countries.

Lagarde handed part of the list containing the names of Greek depositors to the authorities in Greece in 2010 to help the cash-strapped country clamp down on tax evasion.

It was later found that then finance minister Giorgos Papaconstantinou had removed the names of individuals related to him from the original document.

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