The Swiss private bank subsidiary of the British financial institution HSBC pays about 192 million dollars to settle a tax evasion in the United States. This was confirmed by the US Department of Justice on Wednesday. The Bank has been accused of supporting US clients in hiding offshore assets and income through the use of undeclared Swiss bank accounts between 2000 and 2010.
The investigation will be stopped against the million-dollar payment, as the Ministry of Justice in Washington further announced. The deal is only the latest in a series of settlements and fines in similar tax cases involving numerous Swiss-based banks, including UBS and the Credit Suisse Group.
The US investigators wanted to pull the Geneva-based HSBC subsidiary to account for conspiracy to defraud the United States. However, in the context of the settlement that has now been reached, the claim should be dropped unless the bank is guilty of doing anything wrong for the next three years.
The HSBC Swiss Private Bank welcomed the agreement with the US judiciary in a statement and vowed to have improved its internal controls. The settlement amount to be paid is completely covered by provisions.