October 3, 2012

Tax collectors steal 100 million euro from the Italian Government

Employees protesting not being paid since 5 months

Another day another colossal fraud in Italy!
Today Mr. Saggese, the boss of Tributi Italia, a tax collection agency has been arrested for pocketing 100 million euro from taxes collected on behalf of over 400 Italian cities.
Mr. Saggese had been arrested twice in 2001 and 2009 nonetheless he become the director of Tributi Italia which was until recently the biggest collection agency in Italy with a revenue of 280 millions in 2008 and thousand of employees who have lost their job.
The agency is currently filing for a Chapter 11 bankruptcy, while the government has been considering a bailout of the firm.
His former administrator Mr. Cali' had been arrested in 2007 for a 93 million euro fraud against Banca di Roma while many of the auditors were not even qualified.
It did help of course to enrol government auditors and pay lavishly some inspectors to join the company, furthermore city administrators and councillors were granted luxury holidays and gifts to cooperate.
Tributi Italia was paid a commission of 30% of the amount collected and in some cases the commission went up to 75%.
According to investigators the amounts stolen were used in part to pay debts contracted with banks and more than 20 million euro were pocketed by Mr. Saggese.
Of course having control of so much money meant a lot of leverage power for Tributi Italia who was also able to dictate to municipalities to hire friends and relatives.
The 400 cities which took advantage of Tributi Italia services are either broke or in deep trouble and the final price is being paid by the citizens who are losing services and jobs.
The money has vanished and so far has not been traced yet.
Municipalities, regulation authorities, Ministry of Finance, government and regions were either blind, pretending to be blind or useless in controlling the largest tax collection agency in Italy.
This is again not an isolate case, many more scandals like this will rock Italy soon, let us not forget that Tributi Italia started to fail when austerity started to bite and reduced tax figures.
Corruption is surfacing because the economic crisis is stalling its engine.
Be prepared to enjoy soon more colourful tales from Douche Land!

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