Germany arrests Swiss spy hunting tax fraud whistle-blowers

STEFFEN SCHMIDT

An exclusive sports car is seen opposite the two Swiss banks UBS, (L), and Credit Suisse, (R), 18 April 2013, in Zurich, Switzerland.

Germany arrests Swiss spy hunting tax fraud whistle-blowers


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German federal prosecutors arrested a Swiss intelligence officer, that is, a case they treat as espionage, Die Welt reports.

The suspect is named as the 54-year old Daniel M. and was apparently working in the financial sector. He was arrested on Friday in Frankfurt and was allegedly trying to secure information on Swiss banking sector whistleblowers, selling information to German authorities. He is believed to work for the Swiss NBD intelligence agency since 2012; if found guilty the 54-year old faces a ten-year sentence.

The Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) also conducted several searches in a hotel, businesses, and houses in Frankfurt and the Wetterau region.

Since 2006, German tax authorities have paid €18 million of to procure CDs with information on German tax evasion involving Swiss accounts. The information has yielded billions in tax revenue.

Switzerland believes such data are the product of cybercrime and cannot be used for criminal prosecution. However, the European Court of Justice has cleared the used of the information to prosecute tax evasion, Reuters reports.

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