New twist in the case of consulting firms, and more specifically on the tax aspect of the case.
This Wednesday, in a press release sent to
, the Senate office announced that it had decided "
to seize the prosecution [...] for suspicion of false testimony
" on the tax situation of the consulting firm McKinsey in France.
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Read alsoHow the consulting firm McKinsey would have escaped corporate tax in France
In their explosive report on the growing influence of consulting firms in France, published in the middle of the presidential campaign, senators Éliane Assasi and Arnaud Bazin (CRCE and LR) claimed that the American firm escaped corporate tax ( IS) in France.
If he was theoretically well subject to it, “
his payments have been zero euros for at least 10 years
”, concluded the commission, describing the situation as a “
caricatural example of tax optimization
However, this observation was contrary to the words "
held under oath
" by the associate director of the firm, Karim Tadjeddine: in mid-January, he assured "
we pay corporation tax in France and all salaries are in a company governed by French law which pays its taxes in France
At the end of March, a few weeks after the publication of the report, the commission of inquiry had therefore announced that it would take legal action for, precisely, “
false testimony before the commission of inquiry
”, on the part of the associate director of the firm.
For its part, the company has always refuted these accusations, ensuring that it pays the tax due.
Raising a “
The announcement of this afternoon comes, in reality, "to
raise a procedural quibble
", explains a senatorial source to
On March 25, the commission of inquiry wanted to seize the prosecutor, "
because it is forbidden to lie
" during a hearing, as recalled in article 6 of the order of November 17, 1958. But, this article specifies , “
the proceedings provided for in this article are exercised at the request of the chairman of the committee or, when the report of the committee has been published, at the request of the office of the assembly concerned
However, the referral letter was not drafted and sent to the prosecutor until a few days after the publication of the report, when the commission of inquiry no longer existed: the texts therefore prohibited prosecutions, unless they were required by the Senate office.
What was validated today, "
", we are told.
The office has removed a procedural obstacle so that the prosecution is seized in good and due form
, summarizes this senatorial source
We have complete confidence in the courts, which will look at things closely
”: in the end, the referral only lost a month and a half, because of these procedural provisions.
There is no ill will on the side of the prosecution
”, we also reassure.
One thing is certain: the senators did not want to see the referral collapse for a simple question of procedure.
From now on, "
it will be up to the prosecution to determine the legal follow-up to be given, in compliance with the principle of separation of powers
", specifies the office of the Senate in its press release.
But an investigation could take several months or even years, since it must first be determined whether McKinsey is escaping the IS in France.
Otherwise, the accusation of perjury cannot be substantiated or refuted.
More broadly, beyond the simple tax aspect which concerns only McKinsey, the Senate intends to take care of the substantive subject of the use of consulting firms by the State.
A cross-party bill, bringing together the members of the commission of inquiry, must be tabled "at the
end of June
that it be examined by the Senate next fall
" and that it makes it possible to better regulate the use of these private entities.
In the meantime, the National Financial Prosecutor's Office (PNF) is continuing its investigation
into McKinsey's "
tax status " in France, which opened at the end of March.