HMRC confirms HSBC Swiss data can now be shared

DATA leaked to HM Revenue & Customs exposing tax evasion and avoidance among HSBC Suisse clients can now be shared among other UK law enforcement authorities, it has been confirmed.

HMRC chief executive Lin Homer (pictured) revealed the development during a hearing with the Treasury Select Committee, explaining that until this point, HMRC had been unable to share the data for anything other than tax purposes, meaning proceedings over offences such as money laundering could not take place.

While the data was originally stolen and leaked in 2008 by HSBC IT worker Hervé Falciani, HMRC maintains it only received the data “under very strict international treaty conditions”, which limited its use to tax purposes only.

However, following representations that began in 2010, the rules have now been relaxed. HMRC has arranged a multi-agency meeting next week to discuss how the stolen HSBC Suisse data can be shared with them. The agencies involved are the Serious Fraud Office, the Financial Conduct Authority, Crown Prosecution Service, City of London Police, National Crime Agency and EuroJust.

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