Jean-Claude Juncker held secret meetings with Amazon officials involved in their tax avoidance strategy while president of Luxembourg, legal papers reveal

Mail Online | 7/13/2016 | Daniel Bates In New York For The Daily Mail
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The President of the European Commission held secret meetings with Amazon officials involved in the firm's controversial tax avoidance strategy when he was Prime Minister of Luxembourg.

Jean-Claude Juncker hosted the officials at a time when his country was offering cozy deals to multinational companies that let them pay little or no tax.

Meetings - Critics - Evidence - Mr - Juncker

The meetings were not previously disclosed and critics said that they could be evidence that Mr Juncker was 'marketing' Luxembourg as a haven for tax avoidance.

Court documents also allege that Amazon hid key data from the US tax authorities after it was questioned about its low tax rate.

Mr - Juncker - President - Luxembourg - Scrutiny

Mr Juncker was president of Luxembourg between 1995 and 2013 and has come under intense scrutiny for facilitating tax avoidance on a global scale.

In 2014 he faced calls to resign following the 'Lux Leaks' revelations - but nobody was fired or held accountable.

Documents - Mr - Juncker - Meetings - Amazon

The documents about Mr Juncker's meetings with Amazon were revealed by Newsweek magazine and were from a court case in Seattle between Amazon and the IRS, the US tax authority.

They show that Mr Juncker met with four senior Amazon tax officials between September 9 and 12 2003.

Mr - Juncker - Others - Bob - Comfort

Mr Juncker met, amongst others, Bob Comfort, who was instrumental in setting up Amazon's European tax structure.

He also met Jocelyn Krabbenschmidt, Amazon's director of global direct tax from 1999 until 2012.

Meeting - Jeroen - Pit - Amazon - Head

Another meeting was with Jeroen Pit, Amazon's head of EU VAT.

According to Newsweek, the court documents state: 'Amazon tax executives met with the Luxembourg prime minister.'

Alex - Cobham - Director - Research - Tax

Alex Cobham, director of research at the Tax Justice Network, said that if the meetings showed that Mr Juncker had 'direct involvement' in promoting Luxembourg as a place to avoid tax then he had to resign.

Sven Giegold, a German lawmaker in the European Parliament who has spoken out about Mr Juncker's record, said the meetings were very worrying.

He told...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Mail Online
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