Today, 26 April 2016, the trial against the sources behind LuxLeaks commences in Luxembourg. Fabio De Masi, GUE/NGL coordinator in the European Parliament's special TAXE committee on tax avoidance, created after the LuxLeaks scandal, will be called to testify in court upon invitation of the defence. Antoine Deltour who is, amongst other things, accused of theft, violation of trade secrets and breach of confidentiality, faces up to 10 years' imprisonment if convicted. Besides Deltour, two other people have been indicted, including French journalist Edouard Perrin.
Fabio De Masi comments ahead of the trial: “Without people like Deltour and Perrin, neither the public nor the European Parliament would have been aware of the massive scale of tax dumping in the EU. And the European Commission would not have been in a position to significantly extend its state aid investigations on tax rulings across all member states. In addition, there would never have such an extraordinary amount of public pressure to move into the direction of much-needed tax transparency in Europe.”
De Masi continues: “It is incomprehensible for people in the street, and also a blunt violation of fundamental tax justice, if those blowing the whistle are facing jail while those assisting the theft of public money remain in the highest public office. It is all the more scandalous that the European Commission and the large groups in the European Parliament express compassion with and support for whistleblowers when speaking to the public while at the same time working to lower their effective protection through the trade secrets directive, adopted right after the Panama Leaks. What we need are legally binding measures that introduce a robust protection for all whistleblowers, in addition to an effective and comprehensive response against tax evasion and tax avoidance, instead of the piecemeal approach full of loopholes proposed by the Commission and member states.”
Following the opening session of the trial, Fabio De Masi will hold a press conference jointly with David Wagner (déi Lénk) at 13:00 – 63, Boulevard de la Pétrusse, L-2320 Luxembourg.
GUE/NGL Press Contact:
Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20
Nikki Sullings + 32 483 03 55 75