Don’t try this at home, or without a high-powered politician (or 2) in your pocket.
A bombshell report released Sunday sheds light on the highly secretive Swiss banking system that allowed U.K. bank HSBC to profit from accounts linked to arms traffickers and corrupt dictatorships. The files detail nearly $120 billion in murky accounts, much of it shielded from the gaze of tax authorities.
According to the report, HSBC’s Swiss private bank attracted the ultra-wealthy of the world by exploiting loopholes in international tax law — for example, by registering individuals as corporations. In other cases HSBC allegedly created undeclared “black” accounts to help customers hide their cash from domestic authorities.