Swiss bank UBS fined €3.7 billion in French tax fraud case

The bank was convicted of illegally helping French clients to hide billions of euros from French tax authorities.

February 20, 2019 06:40 pm | Updated 06:44 pm IST - PARIS

A man walks past a UBS logo projected on a screen in Singapore on January 14, 2019.

A man walks past a UBS logo projected on a screen in Singapore on January 14, 2019.

A Paris court on February 20 fined Swiss banking giant UBS €3.7 billion ($4.2 billion) in a tax fraud case, a record for such a case in France.

The bank was convicted of illegally helping French clients to hide billions of euros from French tax authorities.

The trial opened last autumn after seven years of investigations, launched when former employees came forward with claims of unlawful conduct.

This came as authorities across Europe cracked down on tax evasion and dubious banking practices in the wake of the 2008 global financial crisis.

In the UBS case, French authorities determined that more than €10 billion had been kept from the eyes of their tax officials between 2004 and 2012.

The fine was in keeping with that demanded by the National Financial Prosecutor's office.

UBS's French subsidiary was also fined €15 million for complicity.

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