Stuttgart prosecutors search Porsche offices in payments probe

FILE PHOTO: The logo of German carmaker Porsche AG is seen before the company's annual news conference in Stuttgart, Germany, March 17, 2017. REUTERS/Lukas Barth

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Stuttgart prosecutors on Tuesday said Porsche AG’s offices were searched as part of a broader probe investigating confidential information leaks to a tax advisor and high remuneration payments to a Porsche works council member.

The probe involved 176 police and tax inspectors as well as 10 state prosecutors, the Stuttgart prosecutor’s office said.

Tax investigators and prosecutors in Baden-Wuerttemberg searched several premises including Porsche AG’s offices in Weissach and Stuttgart, the offices of a tax advisor in Stuttgart, and offices of finance authorities, the Stuttgart prosecutor’s office said in a statement.

A tax official is being probed on suspicion of having leaked confidential information to a tax advisor of Porsche AG in exchange for receiving favors, the prosecutor’s office said.

Porsche managers are being probed on suspicion of a breach of fiduciary trust on suspicion of having granted “disproportionate” payments to a member of Porsche’s works council, the prosecutor’s office said, without elaborating further.

Reporting by Edward Taylor, editing by Riham Alkousaa