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Apple accused of defrauding Italian government of $1.34B in taxes

updated 01:19 pm EST, Wed November 13, 2013

Investigation is 'under way'

(Updated with news of raid on Milan HQ) The Italian government is currently investigating Apple for alleged tax fraud worth over €1 billion, or about $1.34 billion US, Reuters reports. The newswire agency cites a "judicial source with direct knowledge of the matter," asked to confirm or deny a story in local media. "The Apple investigation is under way," the source is quoted as saying, without providing any additional details.

Apple is just one of a number of corporations being scrutinized in Italy for possible tax dodges. In June, fashion designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana were punished with a 20-month suspended prison sentence and a large fine for holding hundreds of millions of euros in unpaid taxes. European governments in general have been cracking down on multinationals that use elaborate schemes to avoid taxes, a particular problem in an era when governments are often cash-strapped and cutting basic social services to appease debt concerns.

The center of attention has frequently been on Ireland, through which companies like Apple can funnel international cash while paying minimal local or foreign taxes; the Italian case, in fact, involves income booked in Ireland but which was actually generated in Italy. The Irish government has been considering eliminating some of its loopholes, but others might allow a modified version of current practices to continue.

Update: The original Italian report, from l'Espresso, states that regulators have raided Apple Italy's Milan headquarters and seized items related to the investigation. Apple is believed to be challenging the seizure order.



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. danviento

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 12-28-05

    Linkbait much?

    Of course worldwide corporations are going to move assets outside of high-tax areas. Apple has this same deal running with US assets and holding money outside of the country.

    Sorry bureaucrats, but if you push too hard, entities like apple have been known to pull out entirely rather than deal with your desperate money grabs.

    Next they'll be shouting, 'Ni!' and demanding shrubberies as Apple gallops past.

  1. Sebastien

    Registered User

    Joined: 04-29-00

    The usual Apple fanboi response "Nah! Apple's done nothing wrong"

  1. panjandrum

    Junior Member

    Joined: 12-01-04

    While I'm sure that it is somewhat annoying that Apple is currently being singled-out as the poster-child of corporate pond-scum, it is great to see that maybe the tide is turning and that this kind of behavior will no longer be tolerated. (Side note: why oh why are so many Apple "fans" actually (and obviously) complete fanbois? Think Different people, and that mean being able to think for yourself. From any objective viewpoint Apple clearly gets things wrong on occasion. It's ok to realize that and to admit it. In fact, it will probably help Apple in the long-run if fans can provide them with feedback free of unthinking religious zealotry).

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