Top Belgian bank in tax fraud scandal
20 April 2004
BRUSSELS – Senior executives from one of Belgium’s leading banks are being investigated for tax fraud, it was confirmed on Tuesday.
In a statement released on Tuesday, Dexia said that group chairman Francois Narmon along with three other senior executives – Luc Onclin, Michel Bouteille and Roland Dumortier – were being investigated for alleged tax fraud.
According to the allegations, the two banks that merged in 1996 to form Dexia – Credit Local de France and Credit Communal de Belgique – knowingly helped their clients to avoid paying death duties in Belgium.
All of the men under investigation held senior posts at one of the two banks.
Reports in the Flemish financial daily De Tijd say the alleged scam could have at one stage deprived the Belgian state of around EUR 100 million in tax revenues, although much of this money was subsequently recovered.
But in its statement Dexia said it believed neither Credit Local de France nor Credit Communal de Belgique had acted improperly.
“The bank believes that the procedures it had in place at the time were legal and necessary for its good operation,” the statement reads.
[Copyright Expatica 2004]
Subject: Belgian news