On the wall: Grüezi Bank, Zurich. Private accounts

Uli Hoeneß:

I didn’t do it for myself. I was saving up so FC Bayern could afford Messi one day.

Uli Hoeness, the president of Bayern Munich, has confessed to the German tax authorities that he has an account in Switzerland, estimated to hold around EUR 10 million.

Receive the best of European journalism straight to your inbox every Thursday

Exposed earlier this week, the case has taken a political twist. In 2012, it turns out, the German government tried to negotiate an agreement with Switzerland that would have ensured anonymity for tax evaders, on condition that the Swiss banks pay the German tax authorities. But the Bundestag rejected that agreement. Since then several regions have purchased CD-ROMs containing the names of offenders.

To avoid being “discovered”, Hoeness came clean. Nonetheless, this popular personality in Germany has become the symbol of the Angela Merkel government's alleged laxity in the fight against tax fraud. The revelations have emerged in a week when Hoeness’s club created a sensation by drubbing Lionel Messi’s FC Barcelona  4-0 in the Champions League.

Was this article useful? If so we are delighted! It is freely available because we believe that the right to free and independent information is essential for democracy. But this right is not guaranteed forever, and independence comes at a cost. We need your support in order to continue publishing independent, multilingual news for all Europeans. Discover our membership offers and their exclusive benefits and become a member of our community now!

Are you a news organisation, a business, an association or a foundation? Check out our bespoke editorial and translation services.

Support independent European journalism

European democracy needs independent media. Join our community!

On the same topic