Taxman had no right to access Mr De Gucht's accounts
It is looking increasingly unlikely that Belgian persecutors will be able to mount a court case against the European Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht in connection with tax evasion charges.
A court in Ghent has now ruled that Belgian tax inspectors didn't have sufficient grounds to insist on gaining access to the private accounts of the Belgian on the European Commission and his wife, Mireille Schreurs.
The Belgian taxman has been demanding 900,000 euros from the couple after it discovered that the European Commissioner made a profit of 1.2 million euros on a share sale.
The probe into the De Guchts started when the taxman started to ask questions about a villa in Tuscany. The commissioner's counsel argued that the villa wasn't Mr De Gucht's private property, but was owned by an Italian corporation established under Italian law.
The suspect share transaction only came to light after Mr De Gucht's private accounts were investigated. The Ghent appeal court has now ruled that the taxman didn't have sufficient grounds to suspect tax evasion and examine these accounts.
[Flandersnews.be / Expatica]