Ex-PwC employee in Luxembourg arrested over leaks

Luxembourg-based employee charged with theft and violation of trade secrets

Jean-Claude Juncker: said the deals disclosed in the reports were legal but agreed they resulted in “feeble” amounts of tax being paid by the corporations concerned

Jean-Claude Juncker: said the deals disclosed in the reports were legal but agreed they resulted in “feeble” amounts of tax being paid by the corporations concerned

 

A former employee of PricewaterhouseCoopers in Luxembourg has been charged in relation to the leaking of thousands of pages of confidential documents concerning the tax affairs of some of the largest corporations in the world.

The unidentified PwC worker, reported to be French, was charged by a magistrate after being taken in for questioning on Friday. The development follows an internal PwC inquiry in Luxembourg initiated in June 2012.

A spokesman for the Duchy’s prosecutor’s office said the person had been charged by an investigating magistrate on counts of theft, breach of confidentiality, violation of trade secrets, money-laundering, and fraudulent access to an automated data-processing system.”

Damaging

In November The Irish Times along with other media outlets around the globe published reports based on leaked documents drafted by PwC Luxembourg and which concerned advanced tax agreements companies including Apple, Ikea, Pepsi and others had concluded with the Luxembourg tax authorities.

The former prime minister of Luxembourg, Jean Claude Juncker, who is now the President of the European Commission, said the deals disclosed in the reports were legal but agreed they resulted in “feeble” amounts of tax being paid by the corporations concerned, and that he had been politically damaged by the disclosures.

The reports were produced in partnership with the Washington DC-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.

Money laundering

It is not clear what the reference to money-laundering in the prosecutor’s statement relates to.

Local newspapers in Luxembourg have reported that the PwC employee made copies of the 28,000 pages of confidential documentation over a two year period.

Last week The Irish Times and other media organisations across Europe published further reports on multinationals’ tax affairs, in partnership with the ICIJ, and this time based on a fresh batch of leaked documents which included confidential files drafted by KPMG, Deloitte and EY (formerly Ernst & Young), as well as PwC. The companies involved included Walt Disney and Skype.