Dáil Éireann - Volume 590 - 14 October, 2004
Written Answers - Non-Resident Accounts.
Ms Shortall Ms Shortall
65. Ms Shortall asked the Minister for Finance the number of High Court orders sought to date by the Revenue Commissioners under the Finance Act 1999 to require financial institutions to supply names, addresses and other relevant information regarding holders of bogus accounts at the latest date for which figures are available; the number of cases in which orders have been granted; the general progress made to date in identifying the holders of such accounts who did not avail of the recent voluntary disclosure scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [24673/04]
Mr. Cowen Mr. Cowen
Mr. Cowen: Authorised Revenue Commissioners officers are empowered to make an application to a judge of the High Court seeking an order requiring financial institutions to supply names, addresses and other rel evant information concerning account holders who may have held bogus non-resident deposit accounts. Such applications are made under section 908 of the Taxes Consolidation Act 1997, as amended by the Finance Act 1999. Information supplied by the financial institutions under section 908 orders is the principal basis for identifying bogus non-resident account holders who did not avail of the voluntary disclosure scheme in 2001. This inquiry work commenced on 16 November 2001.
I am advised by the Revenue Commissioners that 18 applications for orders under section 908 have been made and have been granted. When one includes institutions which have been taken over or amalgamated with other institutions, these orders seek information in respect of accounts in 26 financial institutions. No further applications for such orders are pending in regard to the bogus non-resident account inquiries.
A large volume of information has been reported to the Revenue Commissioners under the High Court orders. Inquiry work in the examination of the first batch of taxpayers commenced on 11 October 2002. Further general issues of inquiry letters were made in January, May, July, September, October 2003 and January 2004. These general inquiry letter issues relate to 91,000 non-resident accounts that had Irish addresses connected to them. A total of 177,000 inquiry letters have been issued to taxpayers in respect of these non-resident accounts. The final general inquiry letter issue took place in January 2004.
While it is clear that this is an extensive investigation programme the Revenue Commissioners have informed me that they are satisfied that significant progress has been made in this the final phase of the investigations. Since 15 November 2001 payments of €325 million have been made to the Revenue Commissioners by taxpayers who held bogus non-resident accounts.
Dáil Éireann 590 Written Answers Non-Resident Accounts.