How this bank uses public money to fund tax dodging by the super-rich


In an ideal world, there would be a legal imposition on banks not to support activities harmful to the mechanisms that allow it to go on existing.

But this isn’t an ideal world. If it was, there would be no Conservative Party, let alone a Conservative Government – to whom the thought of such an imposition would be an unacceptable interference in the free market.

Since Coutts is so keen to bite the hand that feeds, perhaps it should pay back all public money provided to it during the bank bailouts – with interest?

Just don’t expect a Conservative to make that demand.

The taxpayer bailouts of the banks have had dire consequences for the country.

But while we’ve been enduring austerity, the super-rich have been squirreling their money away in tax havens.

Now it turns out that one of the top banks helping them to do that, Coutts, is indirectly owned by the very taxpayers it is ripping off.

Coutts has been named in the Panama Papers as one of the worst offenders when it comes to helping the super-rich use offshore havens to avoid paying taxes.

The private bank, which counts the Queen among its customers, instructed Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca to set up 487 shell companies to help its clients avoid paying taxes, according to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ).

That puts it among the ‘top ten’ banks implicated in the biggest data leak in history.

You might think this is all par for the course for a private bank serving the country’s elite. But the Coutts division in question is a subsidiary of the Royal Bank of Scotland – and RBS is 73% owned by British taxpayers after we bailed it out.

So, while taxpayers bear the brunt of the bank bailouts and austerity, a bank that benefited from that bailout has been busy helping Britain’s super-rich to avoid paying taxes.

Source: Revealed: How British taxpayers are paying for the super-rich elite to dodge taxes | The Canary

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4 thoughts on “How this bank uses public money to fund tax dodging by the super-rich

  1. Terry Davies

    the royal family are customers of the coutts bank. wonder if they have to give access to their tax affairs if there is an investigation for money laundering ???

  2. Brian

    This is interesting, Coutts was acquired by RBS many years ago, but has always been seen to be at arms length, little surprise when their main clients are tax evaders. Interesting, because was the good bank, bad bank, elements not split off during the banking crisis. Forgive my memory, but I seem to recall one Cameron was involved. Did he at the time have a financial interest in this move linked to his beneficial interests in offshore banking.

  3. Dez

    All of this going on with immunity…..yet a few days ago I had to trapse down the solicitors with a recent bank statement and utility invoice and passport to support a recent house purchase ……. meanwhile billions are leaching out of the country by all manner of spivvy schemes. All this so called vetting in the name of transparency and money laundering just felt like once again the little guys are getting the third degree whilst the pig stuffers do what they want with their smug nudge nudge wink wink immunity…….jealous….yes of course as I would like to avoid tax.

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