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Greece’s Tax Cheats Being Corralled: Cross-Checks, Audits, Confiscations

ATHENS – Greeks trying to hide their income to avoid some of the highest tax rates in Europe are increasingly being caught by audits and cross-checks, and authorities moving to immediately confiscate assets.

The lowest tax rate in Greece is 22 percent and applies to those making under 20,000 euros ($21,315) and 44 percent for those making more than 40,000 euros ($42,631) and no deductions allowed.

Many rich Greeks put their money into secret foreign bank accounts, Switzerland being a favorite place, and public workers and those receiving salaries paying most of the taxes in the country.

Greek inspectors are able to get some information from abroad in trying to track where money is being ferreted away, and are looking more at professionals declaring less than 10,000 euros ($10,658) annually to avoid all taxes.

Tax compliance is said to be higher than before because of the scrutiny although the rich are still finding ways not to pay taxes, leaving the burden on those who have no choice and have their salaries recorded.

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