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Wealthy Croats Tied up in HSBC Tax Dodge Sting

HSBCThe government says that the Croats caught up in the HSBC tax sting uncovered this week will be tracked down and slapped with some big tax bills…

News broke this week that banking giant HSBC had helped wealthy clients across the world evade hundreds of millions of euros worth of tax. The BBC reported on Monday that HSBC used its Swiss private banking subsidiary to hide millions of dollars. Secret files listed over 100,000 clients in 203 countries with links to Swiss bank accounts, including 10 Croatian nationals.

Close to 226 million kuna (30 million euros) had been deposited with HSBC by private individuals or companies that are in some way were associated with Croatia. 37 accounts had been opened with connections to the country, with 10 of them opened by Croatian passport or citizenship holders.

The government will investigate Croatia links to the leaked files and revise people’s tax bills upward as a result, says daily Jutarnji list.

“We will send requests to all institutions to see who has savings in HSBC and whether there really was tax fraud or other criminal activities committed. We’ll check the assets of these people also. If it is found that they have evaded taxes, then certainly we will re-calculate their tax,” a source close to the government confirmed.

All will depend obviously on how compliant HSBC will be in the process. HSBC faces criminal investigations in the United States, France, Belgium and Argentina but not its home country of Britain, says to the BBC.

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