LONDON Credit Suisse (CSGN.S) has taken out adverts in British Sunday newspapers stressing a zero-tolerance policy on tax evasion, as the Swiss bank tries to limit any damage to its reputation from raids on three of its offices.
Zurich-based Credit Suisse was pulled into an international tax evasion and money laundering investigation on Thursday when coordinated searches were carried out on its London, Paris and Amsterdam offices.
The ads, which appeared in the Sunday Times, Sunday Telegraph and Observer, stated they were a “response to recent reports about tax probes in various European countries”.
Among seven bullet points, Credit Suisse said it “wishes to conduct business with clients that have paid their taxes” and the bank would “continue to work closely with the local authorities in all matters and particularly in this new case”.
The raids reopened the thorny issue of tax evasion which has dogged Swiss banks for years as wealthy individuals around the world have used the country’s strict bank secrecy laws to hide cash from the tax man.
Credit Suisse, Switzerland’s second-biggest bank, in 2014 pleaded guilty and was fined $2.6 billion by U.S. authorities over charges it helped wealthy Americans evade taxes. It has also settled tax dodging cases in Italy and Germany.
(Reporting by Paul Sandle; Writing by Joshua Franklin in Zurich; Editing by Mark Potter)