UBS Gnomes of Zurich Hide Money for Rich Italians and Greeks, Too--CROOK ALERT!

Gnome of Zurich
Gnome of Zurich

Swiss Banks, UBS and Credit Swisse Under Fire for Hiding Money for Italian Tax Evaders

Lugano, a town of 57,000 near the Italian border has become a major haven for Italian tax evaders. Last summer the Italian government, to make up for government budget deficits, began a crackdown on tax evaders with secret UBS accounts in Lugano, Switzeland's third largest banking center after Zurich and Geneva.

Italy's finance minister, Giulio Tremonti, vowed last summer to "dry out" Lugano as a haven for Italian tax evaders. He installed video cameras at the border crossings to record license plate numbers of Italians visiting Lugano and is taking other measures that threaten the huge Italian deposits in Credit Suisse, UBS and other smaller Swiss banks in Lugano. Tremonti also announced an amnesty for depositors who come forward and pay a 5 percent tax on their secret deposits. The amnesty program, according to Tremonti, has resulted in $136 billion in deposits returned to Italy and a $7 billion tax windfall.

[See NY Times article by John Tagliabue 1-7-10 linked below.]

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Comments 8 comments

sabu singh profile image

sabu singh 7 years ago

Thank you for this Hub, Ralph. In India, we certainly need a Giulio Tremonti. There was a story doing the rounds on the net that the largest deposits in Swiss banks are from India. Ofcourse it is impossible to authenticate this, but I am willing to believe it.

I have this theory that the richest man in the world has to be an Indian. Unfortunately, since this person's wealth is illegal and ill-begotten, it will remain hidden and the Bill Gates', Carlos Slims' and Warren Buffets' of the world will continue to claim the throne.

Springboard profile image

Springboard 7 years ago from Wisconsin

For Italy this is a good thing, and I think that the U.S. should delve deeper into this as well (they've at least started). Still, the focus should be on corporate tax breaks and incentives to boost the American economy and increase the tax rolls. Give American companies tax breaks for bringing jobs back, for example, and breaks for creating real and lasting jobs.

And Americans? Well, start buying American whereever and whenever you can and be willing to pay a little premium. I've been doing it myself. For example, socks made by Champion are Made in the USA. It may cost a little more per pair of socks, but an American job is being saved and that will do more to boost tax rolls in this country than going after tax evasion.

BTW, I love the Gnome. :)

Ralph Deeds profile image

Ralph Deeds 7 years ago Author

Thanks for your commemnts, Sabu and Springboard. We're on the same wavelength.

Ralph Deeds profile image

Ralph Deeds 5 years ago Author

HSBC Target of Tax Evasion Investigation

Federal authorities are considering whether to serve a broad legal summons on HSBC to ascertain whether it sold tax-evasion services to scores of wealthy American clients, people briefed on the matter said Wednesday.

Ralph Deeds profile image

Ralph Deeds 5 years ago Author

UBS client pleads guilty to tax evasion. Kenneth Heller, who hid more than $26.4 million at UBS and will pay a fine of $9.8 million, faces a maximum prison term of 15 years.

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Ralph Deeds 4 years ago Author

10-28-12NYTimes--Secret Accounts in Swiss Banks Help Greeks as Well as Italians and Americans

List of Swiss Accounts Turns Up the Heat in Greece -

A Greek magazine published a list of more than 2,000 Greeks said to have accounts in a Swiss bank, raising the stakes in a battle over whether officials had used it to check for possible tax evasion.

Ralph Deeds profile image

Ralph Deeds 4 years ago Author

10-29-12NYTimes "Greek Editor Arrested After Publishing List of Swiss Accounts" OUTRAGEOUS!!!

Greek Editor Arrested After Publishing List of Swiss Bank Accounts -

Kostas Vaxevanis, the editor and owner of Hot Doc magazine, said the list contained the names of 2,000 Greeks who had possibly been evading taxes.

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Ralph Deeds 4 years ago Author

11-2-12NYTimes--Justice Prevails in Greece--Editor Acquitted

Greek Editor Not Guilty in Publishing Names With Swiss Accounts -

The editor fueled a scandal when he charged that Greece was governed by a small group of business elites who were above paying taxes while the rest of the population suffered deep cuts.

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