The list of customers of the Swiss branch of the UK bank HSBC, prepared by former HSBC employee Mr. Hervé Falciani and offered to governments engaged in investigations on unreported foreign bank accounts and tax evasion conducts, has been delivered by the French prosecutor to the Italian prosecutors and tax officials for investigation on Italian bank account holders.
The list is said to contain 120,000 names, out of which 7,000 names are Italian customers of the bank with potentially unreported bank accounts.
Under Italian law, failing to report foreign investments carries a penalty of 10 to 50 percent of the value of the unreported investments. Furthermore, the assets on the account are presumed to constitute unreported taxable income, and penalties for failure to report foreign taxable income from unreported foreign accounts range from 240 to 480 percent of the tax due.
Italy enacted an amnesty for the repatriation of undeclared foreign assets which elapsed on April 30, 2010. Under the tax amnesty program taxpayers had the opportunity to declared their foreign assets and repatriate them into Italy without any tax or penalty by paying a substituted tax of 5 to 7 percent.