November 1, 2018 / 1:14 PM / 18 days ago

Danish watchdog seeks Nordic banks' help in probe of $2 billion fraud

FILE PHOTO: General view of the Danske Bank building in Copenhagen, Denmark, September 27, 2018. REUTERS/Jacob Gronholt-Pedersen/File Photo

COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Denmark’s tax minister has asked the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority (FSA) to investigate whether Danske Bank (DANSKE.CO), Nordea (NDAFI.HE) and SEB (SEBa.ST) have handed over all relevant material in a $2 billion (1.5 billion pounds) tax probe.

The tax ministry says it needs more information from the banks in order to advance its investigation into the alleged 12.7 billion Danish crown ($1.94 billion) fraud, which does not directly involve the banks.

It said there was no indication that the banks had committed fraud. The banks were not immediately available for comment.

In its statement the tax ministry said the FSA would investigate whether the banks sent all relevant information related to Denmark’s dividend tax to the authorities.

“I’m not convinced the banks have lived up to their social responsibilities,” the Tax Minister Karsten Lauritzen said in a statement.

The tax ministry said it would also assess whether anti-money laundering rules were followed.

Danish tax authorities have so far seized 3.3 billion crowns in four other countries in the case, the tax ministry said, declining to name those countries.

Reporting by Teis Jensen; Editing by Edmund Blair and Jon Boyle

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