Since the morning apparently search public servants Cologne the central office of the Commerzbank in Frankfurt am Main. The Handelsblatt reports, citing several informants. Accordingly, the suspicion is that Commerzbank was involved in trading large blocks of shares around the distribution date at the expense of taxpayers.
The institute did not want to comment on ongoing investigations. A spokesperson said, "As in the past, we are of course fully cooperating with the authorities, and it is in our best interest that this matter be resolved as quickly as possible."
The public prosecutor Cologne confirmed, "that today in the framework of the procedure complex around the Cum ex business investigations are accomplished". The Authority did not want to comment on the nature of the investigative measures or sites, "due to tax secrecy". From circles of the bank means that the current investigations go back on internal investigations and own announcements of the bank.
"Cum-Ex" is considered the biggest tax scandal in German history. Investors used a gap in the law to bounce the state down billions for years to come. Around the dividend record date, shares with ("cum") and no ("ex") dividend entitlement were moved back and forth between several participants. In the end, the treasury was no longer sure who owned the papers. Tax offices reimbursed capital gains tax that had not been paid at all.
Intensified investigations, also at other banks
The tax loop hole was closed in 2012. At the beginning of September, the first criminal case against two British securities dealers started in front of the Bonn district court.
Already in November 2017, Commerzbank had been searched for cum-ex transactions. At that time, the Attorney General's Office Frankfurt became active. She said that she was investigating cum-ex deals from 2006 to 2010 with a multi-billion euro investment. Due to false tax certificates, a tax loss of around 40 million euros was incurred.
In recent months, authorities across the country have intensified their investigations into cum-ex trades. Only at the end of August, the public prosecutor's office Cologne searched rooms of the German stock exchange subsidiary Clearstream.