June 22, 2010 / 10:11 AM / 9 years ago

Italy uncovers 22 bln euros in tax evasion squeeze

ROME, June 22 (Reuters) - Italian tax police uncovered 22.2 billion euros ($29.79 billion) of undeclared income through May, authorities said on Tuesday, the results of an offensive against tax evasion during the economic downturn.

The taxes to be paid on the hidden income discovered in the first five months of the year amount to 3.1 billion euros, the tax police said in a statement.

Evasion of 1.4 billion euros of value-added tax was also discovered, and 3,790 tax evaders had been identified.

“The balance in the first five months of 2010 is decisively positive,” the statement said.

The Italian Treasury had said it expected the fight against tax evasion and welfare cheats would raise 1.8 billion euros in 2011 and rise to 6.6 billion euros annually starting in 2013. [ID:nWEA5334]

Italy’s tax agency said in February it is investigating more than 2,000 Italians who transferred 2 billion euros abroad in 2007-2008. [ID:nTST002175]

(Editing by Patrick Graham)

$1=.7453 Euro

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