FACTBOX-German tax evasion: the national hobby

Feb 15 (Reuters) - Hundreds of rich and prominent Germans could be swept up in a tax-evasion investigation [ID:nL15544208].

Here are some facts about tax dodging in Germany:

Germans evade around 30 billion euros ($44 billion) in taxes every year, the German Tax Union estimates

A tax amnesty that Germany offered in 2004 in a bid to lure back money from neighbouring financial centres such as Switzerland, Luxembourg and Austria raised less than one billion euros for public coffers compared with a target of five billion

In a 1999 poll, 57 percent of Germans surveyed said tax evasion was not acceptable in any case, near the middle of a field led by Japan and Canada and trailed by Greece and Belgium (Reporting by Dave Graham and Michael Shields; Editing by Quentin Bryar)