|French Tax Probe Targets HSBC|
It is the latest sign of governments cracking down on tax evasion and money laundering after the financial crisis
France has opened a probe into whether British bank HSBC offered illicit products to help French clients avoid tax in Switzerland.
An HSBC spokeswoman declined to comment.
The French investigation into the alleged sale of illicit products and tax fraud is based on a list of clients at HSBC's Swiss unit obtained in 2009, the prosecutor's office said.
The list forms part of a batch of data leaked by former HSBC employee Herve Falciani, who is wanted in Switzerland on allegations of stealing data on tens of thousands of bank accounts. Falciani told a Spanish court last week he was a whistleblower fighting corruption.
The British bank last year agreed to pay a record USD1.92 billion in fines to U.S. authorities for allowing itself to be used to launder drug money flowing out of Mexico and for other banking lapses.
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Published on our website on April 26, 2013