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French Tax Officials Raid Google In Paris

by Ulrika Lomas, Tax-News.com, Brussels

24 May 2016


Google's offices in Paris have been raided by more than 100 investigators on behalf of France's tax authority, reports said.

In a widely reported statement, France's prosecutor's office said the "searches are the result of a preliminary investigation opened on June 16, 2015, relative to aggravated tax fraud and organized money laundering. The investigation is aimed at finding out whether Google Ireland Ltd. is permanently established in France and if, by not declaring some of its activity on French soil, it has failed to meet its fiscal obligations."

The investigation is said to concern both value-added tax and corporation tax.

The raid follows a confirmation from Google in 2014 that French authorities were seeking payment of additional tax. A regulatory filing from the company said that a notice from French tax authorities concerned the structuring of Google's tax affairs. The company is headquartered in Ireland, with subsidiaries in the Netherlands and Bermuda, allowing Google to mitigate tax liability where the company says it has limited operations, including in France.

TAGS: tax | value added tax (VAT) | Ireland | Netherlands | corporation tax | Bermuda | tax authority | France

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