Nordea employees helped customers with tax evasion
Nordea has played a much more active role in helping customers with tax evasion than they have so far admitted. This according to information from the leaked Panama papers.
This is the opinion of Senior Adviser at Aalborg University, Lars Krull, according to the Danish online newspaper Finans. The assessment is made on the basis of a number of emails that Finance has been granted access to. They are sent to and from Nordea’s filial in Luxembourg.
This includes an email where an employee actively helps a customer to create a company at the law firm Mossack Fonseca in Panama. Nordea’s pension fund, Nordea Life & Pensions, is listed as the owner of the company, but the customer is authorised to control it.
“There exist emails and documents proving that the bank has written directly to Mossack Fonseca to set up companies where customers can hide their assets. I cannot interpret it differently than that the bank has helped customers performing tax evasion,” Lars Krull tells Finance.
Tax lawyer and partner in the law firm TVC, Torben Bagge, believes that it would be a clear-cut case of tax evasion if it had happened in Denmark.
After the large Panama papers leak in 2016, Nordea investigated the matter internally. The bank concluded that no evidence was found that Nordea’s employees had actively helped customers committing tax evasion.
Nordea writes in an email that the bank is about to dissolve the filial in Luxembourg. The bank further writes that their attitude to “tax optimisation” has changed.
«We are in a completely different place as a bank today – and do not participate in banking that solely has the purpose of tax optimization,» Nordea answers Finance in an email.
The Financial Supervisory Authority of Luxembourg, in 2017, issued Den Norske Bank (DNB), Nordea and seven other financial institutions a fine in the wake of the disclosures about the use of tax havens in Panama Papers. The bot was linked to a supervisory body after the disclosures. The Financial Supervisory Authority of Luxembourg believes that the companies violated laws designed to prevent money laundering.
© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today