Dutch government buys secret bank data as it begins clampdown on tax

City A.M. Reporter
THE Dutch government has said it has received a list of hundreds of people who have evaded taxes with secret accounts at banks across Europe, and it plans to pay off the informant who slipped it the information.<br /><br />The deal echoes an early 2008 case in Germany, where the government purchased data on tax evaders from an informant about clients of a Liechtenstein bank. Another high-profile tax case has seen UBS clients investigated by US authorities.<br /><br />The German case snared former Deutsche Post chief Klaus Zumwinkel, who was given a suspended jail term in January for evading nearly &euro;1m in taxes using a Liechtenstein trust.<br /><br />In a statement released over the weekend, the Dutch government said it received the names, addresses, account numbers and phone numbers of several hundred of what the government calls &ldquo;zwartspaarders&rdquo;, or &ldquo;black savers&rdquo;.<br /><br />&ldquo;This is a group of tax payers which knowingly has been evading taxes for years with large sums of money,&rdquo; deputy finance minister Jan Kees de Jager said in a letter to parliament.<br /><br />A source familiar with the situation said there were nearly 500 people on the list. Their accounts were primarily in Switzerland and the Cayman Islands, the source said, with some accounts also found in Liechtenstein and Luxembourg.<br /><br />The finance ministry declined to comment on the contents of the list.