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MEPs start their own LuxLeaks probe


brussels bureau

MEPs start their own LuxLeaks probe

The European Parliament has opened its own investigation into the Lux Leaks tax scandal.

The scandal erupted back in November after Jean-Claude Juncker had taken up his job as commission president.

A group of journalists uncovered evidence that the former Luxembourg premier had been personally involved in brokering favourable tax deals to allow major multinationals to set up there.

But the ‘special’ committee of MEPs has no power to summon key witnesses such as Juncker.

“We are not upholders of the law. We are lawmakers. We wanted to broaden the press investigation on Luxembourg to all member states. There are probably 4,5 and 6 states in which the situation is not normal,” said Alain Lamassoure, a centre-right MEP from France.

Green MEP Philippe Lamberts was one of the most vocal supporters of a parliamentary probe.

The Belgian says most politicians don’t have the courage to act against such allegations.

“Every time there are revelations and scandals, the political world reacts timidly by telling itself that we have to show that we are doing something. Then afterwards, the wind completely comes out of their sails when it comes to really changing something. The purpose of the special committee is put pressure on the Commission and the Member States so that tax practices actually change,” he told euronews.

The parliamentary inquiry follows the start of a Commission investigation into whether the special tax deals granted to the likes of Apple amount to illegal state aid.

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