PracticeAccounting FirmsGovernment investigators storm PwC in Moscow

Government investigators storm PwC in Moscow

Two teams of investigators from the Russian government raid PwC's Moscow offices over Yukos audit

moscow

The Moscow offices of
PricewaterhouseCoopers
have been raided by the Russian government over allegations that the firm
owes back taxes of 290 million roubles (£5.7m) and the for papers linked to the
collapse of oil group Yukos

According to
the Times
ten Interior Ministry police officers demanded access to documents,
while investigators from the Prosecutor General’s Office arrived in search of of
papers linked to the criminal inquiry into the fall of Yukos.

PwC was auditor for Yukos, which has bankrupted after being found guilty of
fraud and tax evasion.

Prosecutors laid fresh money-laundering charges last month against Mikhail
Khodorkovsky, the former chairman of the oil company, alleging that he stole
$25m (£13bn) from the company.

A PwC spokeswoman said both teams of officials had arrived at office
unnannounced. PwC denies that it owes any outstanding taxes, but it has lost
three legal hearings against the claims by the Federal Tax Service.

In
a statement
PwC said: ‘The Ministry of Internal Affairs, however,
took into their possession paper files and electronic records not limited to the
period of 2002, and which in the view of PwC, goes well beyond the scope of the
tax claim.

‘PwC strongly objects to the seizure of such information and has engaged
legal counsel to ensure that applicable laws pertaining to the release of seized
documents are respected and that all documents unrelated to the cases in
question are promptly returned to PwC.’

Further reading:

E&Y hired to advise on Yukos sale

Ex Yukos chief given nine years for fraud

Yukos’ Chapter 11 ruling inspires UK companies

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