• Sweden edition
 

Attempted tax dodge ends up costing Swedish firms dearly

Published: 26 Dec 2009 09:16 GMT+01:00
Updated: 26 Dec 2009 09:16 GMT+01:00

Several hundred Swedish companies will have to pay back a total of half a billion kronor ($70 million) in back taxes after having moved funds to Cyprus in order to evade taxes, reported Swedish Television (SVT).

At the suggestion of unscrupulous tax advisors, many Swedish entrepreneurs have been lured into transferring their profits to a holding company in Cyprus and then borrowing an equivalent amount back home in Sweden.

During a raid of the consulting office by the Swedish Tax Authority (Skatteverket), authorities discovered information that revealed that more than 400 individuals had used the same scheme.

Since it has come to light that their companies in Cyprus were just a smokescreen, the companies involved have been slapped with back taxes.

“Most of them are flimsy set ups without any real business behind them. In those cases, we suspect that it might be a question of tax evasion,” Jan-Erik Bäckman, head of analysis at Skatteverket, told SVT.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

10:03 December 26, 2009 by krigeren
All the more reason not to do business in Sweden.
10:04 December 26, 2009 by Luckystrike
Marcus Evins comes to mind...Hope thye get slaughtered!
13:53 December 26, 2009 by Green Eggs and Ham
Maybe if they didn't have such criminally high tax rates people would not have to resort to such measures.

At least with the Cosa Nostra "looking out" for you, they dont pretend to be anything else but criminals, sometimes I'd appreciate the same sort of honesty from Skatteverket......!

Merry X-mas
13:54 December 26, 2009 by warriorwithin
wel done skatteverket, hope they also look into these falafel guys who refuse to take cards for payment and accept only cash to show less profit and evade taxes.
11:31 December 27, 2009 by wyntha
Abide by the law for now but vote for The Alliance again next year else things could get much worse.
23:59 December 27, 2009 by krigeren
This is more state propaganda aimed at striking fear in those who want to find tax shelters outside of Sweden.

First. This is Skatteverket, side of the story and does not tell the other side. All defendants should hire lawyers and fight skatteverket tooth and nail.

Money goes where it is treated best. Taxed money in Sweden goes to support a social infrastructure that is cracked, falling apart, and not able to cope with the modern day needs of it's citizens.......hence, capital should be rerouted to economies that are more efficient and beneficial to it's citizenry.....if the money is being funneled to cyprus...so be it...if its a better haven to manage money from then Sweden needs to learn how to compete and be attractive for investors........

This story is a double failure by Sweden.....keep it up...in a few years you will only have clients of the state left living here.
11:23 December 28, 2009 by Renfeh Hguh
I have to agree with krigeren.

Skatteverket may not like what these companies are doing and the companys may only have the holding companies in Cyprus because of its more business friendly tax rules. But as Cyprus is part of the EU and it's laws must be inline with the EU, then I would suspect that Skatteverket could have a lot of trouble winning court cases against these companies. It would be a different matter if these holding companies were in tax haven countries outside of the EU.

This does sound like a case of scare and hope.
23:44 December 28, 2009 by Brucelee@stockholm.sweden
Don't do business in Sweden, find a lousy job and all. if you are enterprising, move somewhere else more prosperous in this world. Sweden is a country that people living on "Försäkeringskassan" :) lol,

the 'fyfan' idiot tax systems, kills enterprising people, look at those small business, one of my friend is running such, he said, he only want to earn his salary and pay some lousy tax every month, so his social benefits and pension will be guaranteed, that's all, because he do not see any courage to work hard and make more thus pay more tax. What a sad country today's Sweden is!
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