Deutsche Bank accused of allowing carbon fraud to occur
Six employees are standing trial accused of evading over 200 million Euros in VAT as fraud within the carbon market.
This trial is part of a further widespread EU investigation into the fraud relating to the trading of carbon credits. German prosecutors have identified over 170 suspects of the fraud.
Deutsche Bank is Germany’s biggest bank and whilst none of the six on trial belong to this bank, seven of the 170 suspects are employees of the Deutsche Bank.
Bjoern Peitzmeyer, one of the six, has said that “the bank had left the door open for tax evasion when it established its emissions trading division”. He continued that he had passed his carbon exchanges’ traders exams shortly before the German authorities carried out a swoop on over 230 offices in relation to the 180 million Euro Tax fraud.
Deutsche Bank denies any involvement and reassures that it itself is not under investigation. A spokesman commented:
"We remain of the opinion that Deutsche Bank did not cause any fiscal damage, and therefore should not suffer any consequences".
Judge Martin Back said a thorough investigation and trial would be carried out. They will look into whether the Bank’s employees could have known there was a risk of Tax evasion and fraud by carbon traders when it published its finances for the EU emissions trading.
Experts advise that the cost of such frauds cost national exchequers in the region of 5 billion Euros and so the rules have been tightened to make it harder for traders to avoid paying VAT on emissions credits.