Greece not doing enough against rich tax dodgers, say EU/IMF
Greece's drive to crack down on flagrant tax evaders such as doctors and lawyers is flagging and must be reinvigorated, a report by the European Union and International Monetary Fund said on Monday.
Athens has collected just half the tax debts and conducted less than half the audits it was supposed to under the targets set by its lenders, according to a survey by the country's international lenders which was compiled in November.
"The mission expresses concern that authorities are falling idle and that the drive to fight tax evasion by the very wealthy and the free professions is at risk of weakening," it said.
By the end of September authorities had conducted 440 checks on suspected wealthy tax evaders, compared with a full-year target of 1,300. About 1.1 billion euros in overdue taxes have been collected so far, less than the 2 billion euros targeted.
1. And then there is the US where the wealthy just buy their tax laws.
They aren't in arrears. They just buy indulgences from the members of Congress who are desperate to win elections.
In Catholic theology, an indulgence is the full or partial remission of temporal punishment due for sins which have already been forgiven. The indulgence is granted by the Catholic Church after the sinner has confessed and received absolution. An indulgence is thus not forgiveness of sin nor release from the eternal punishment associated with hell in Christian beliefs. The belief is that indulgences draw on the Treasury of Merit accumulated by Christ's superabundantly meritorious sacrifice on the cross and the virtues and penances of the saints. They are granted for specific good works and prayers.
Indulgences replaced the severe penances of the early Church. More exactly, they replaced the shortening of those penances that was allowed at the intercession of those imprisoned and those awaiting martyrdom for the faith.
Alleged abuses in selling and granting indulgences were a major point of contention when Martin Luther initiated the Protestant Reformation (1517).