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13 Feb 2015 11:55am

HSBC and HMRC bosses to face Treasury Select Comittee

Bosses from both HSBC and HMRC will face the Treasury Select Committee (TSC) in the coming weeks, giving evidence over evasion allegations at HSBC’s Swiss private bank

Although witnesses have not yet been finalised, the organisations’ “current leadership” will be called, expected to be HMRC boss Lin Homer and HSBC head Douglas Flint, a committee spokesperson said.

Andrew Tyrie, chairman of the TSC, said “The committee is concerned about allegations involving HSBC and its Swiss private bank. It has decided to take oral evidence from both HSBC and HMRC.

“Banks have repeatedly told the committee that, since the crisis, they have put in place reforms to ensure that they operate on the basis of sharply improved standards. The committee will need reassurance that they have done so in private banking. The committee will also examine whether part of the banks’ apparent ‘solution’ – de-risking – may have created another problem, that of unreasonably denying customers access to banking services.”

Lin Homer faced a heated grilling at the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) this week over accusations that the Revenue did not act appropriately to information it received from the French tax authority in 2010, detailing 1000 people which HSBC’s Swiss private banking arm allegedly helped evade taxes. Only one prosecution was brought.

Homer faced further embarassment today as French newspaper Le Monde today uncovered an email from HSBC whistleblower to the Revenue from as early as 2008. At the PAC yesterday, Homer denied HMRC ever receiving such an email.

The TSC evidence hearing is expected to take place in the week starting 23 February, the spokesperson said.

Ellie Clayton

 

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