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Corruption Continues Virtually Unchecked in Greece
Spiegel.de ^ | By Julia Amalia Heyer

Posted on 10/16/2012 7:56:08 PM PDT by DeaconBenjamin

While Athens waits for more aid from the European Union, the country continues to be administered in the same old careless manner. Corrupt politicians and the rich continue to help themselves to Greece's funds, and little is being done about it.

How can someone who has declared an annual income of €25,000 transfer €52 million abroad? What kind of supplementary income must an individual have who, according to his tax returns, earned €5,588 in 2010, yet still managed to move €19.8 million abroad? And how can it be that a Greek citizen sequesters €9.7 million abroad although he supposedly earned exactly zero euros?

Tax fraud investigators will have to ask these questions of individuals whose identity is public only as initials. For instance, "G. D." stands at the top of a list of 54,000 Greek citizens who relocated major assets abroad between 2009 and 2011. The list from the Greek central bank is now in the hands of the Finance Ministry.

It is the longest of four lists that currently circulate in Athens. Each names people whose bank balances and real estate holdings do not correspond with what they claimed on their tax returns. But hardly anything is being done. While the governing coalition squabbles with international creditors over hundreds of euros to be trimmed from teachers' and nurses' paychecks, and Athens slashed employee pensions, wealthy Greeks moved billions abroad with relative impunity.

The odyssey of the "Lagarde list," as it's known, exemplifies the typically lax attitude toward tax criminals. For many months, it was thought to be lost, but then it resurfaced in early October. Now, the public prosecutor for financial crimes has a copy. It lists 1,991 Greek owners of Swiss bank accounts, and reportedly includes many prominent individuals from the realms of politics, business and culture.

(Excerpt) Read more at spiegel.de ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Crime/Corruption; Foreign Affairs; Government
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 10/16/2012 7:56:08 PM PDT by DeaconBenjamin
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To: DeaconBenjamin

Has a damned easy time of it over here too.


2 posted on 10/16/2012 8:01:25 PM PDT by tomkat
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To: DeaconBenjamin

Maybe they just had a large positive cash flow.


3 posted on 10/16/2012 8:15:18 PM PDT by Paladin2
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To: DeaconBenjamin

Hey, piggy banks can add up quickly.


4 posted on 10/16/2012 10:42:44 PM PDT by Cyman
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To: DeaconBenjamin
In the days when Papandreou the elder governed the country, after the story broke that the head of the state electricity provider had lined his own pockets with some 1.5 million drachmas, the prime minister reacted with the following quip: "We all agree, of course, that we are allowed to give ourselves a little present from time to time. But please don't make it too large."
5 posted on 10/16/2012 11:02:07 PM PDT by Kennard
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