The German government said on Monday that it
will provide tax authorities in other jurisdictions details of
relevant clients from the DVD containing data on 1,400 clients
of Liechtenstein's LGT Bank, that it purchased
from an ex-employee of the bank for €4.2 million. The bank's
foreign clients are suspected of using the Alpine tax haven to
evade tax in their own countries.
German Finance Ministry spokesman Thorsten Albig
said if other nations will request for the data, it will
willingly share it at no cost to the requesting country.
German daily Handelsblatt said Finland, Sweden
and Norway are interested in acquiring a copy of the CD.
Apparently other nationalities have started to initiate
investigations of their own nationals' involvement in tax
The Irish Revenue Commissioners are reported to
have plans to contact the German tax authorities to see if there
are any Irish names on the list of suspected tax defrauders that
Berlin bought from a whistleblower who worked in a Liechtenstein
A spokesman for the Revenue told The Irish Times
that they were aware of the list obtained by German
He said Revenue was "following developments
with interest". "We will be in touch with the German
authorities," he added.
The UK reportedly paid
a similar Liechtenstein listing of accounts held by 100 wealthy
German magazine Der Spiegel reported that the DVD Germany
purchased was also sold for almost €5 million to US
authorities. The ex-LGT bank employee is reported to have
disclosed he was kidnapped in 1997 in Argentina. The 42-year old
Heinrich Kieber, is reported to have been assisted by Germany to
acquire a new identity and lead a lesser known and safer life.
In related news, the Executive Director of the
United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime Antonio Maria Costa
reminded Liechtenstein that it ratified the UN Convention
Against Transnational Organized Crimes, which relates to anti
Costa added, "Tax havens should not be used
to shelter the proceeds of crime." He urged Liechtenstein to
ratify the UN Convention against Corruption.