Lille. Several heirs of the Mulliez empire indicted for tax fraud

Lille. Several heirs of the Mulliez empire indicted for tax fraud
Lille. Several heirs of the Mulliez empire indicted for tax fraud

Several heirs of the Mulliez family, owners of Auchan, Leroy Merlin and Décathlon, were indicted in an investigation into suspicion of tax fraud, we learned from a judicial Source this Wednesday, confirming information from Release.

This file was opened in 2012 after a complaint from a former family member who felt wronged.

Loans “without writing”

In a first complaint in Lille, he denounces “very high loans without documentation and without interest granted” by group structures “to foreign companies (several hundred million) and to individuals via personal or family civil companies (several million)”.

According to the complainant, these opaque loans without apparent justification constitute a breach of trust, particularly in that they do not respect equality between the partners.

The investigation is looking into this arrangement which “could also allow a reduction in tax in France (allowing for example to benefit from dividends abroad) and would therefore be likely to be classified as aggravated tax fraud or money laundering. aggravated tax fraud,” specifies the judicial Source.

Jérôme and Thierry Mulliez already indicted

The judicial investigation, led by a Parisian financial judge, led to searches and the indictment in 2019 of Jérôme and Thierry Mulliez for breach of trust and laundering of tax fraud.

Three financial structures linked to the family were also indicted in January 2023 for aggravated money laundering and aggravated tax fraud.

In 2023, the investigating judges closed their investigations for the first time.

A survey of companies and holding companies only

But since then, the Directorate of National and International Audits (DVNI), the tax sleuths, have transmitted to the investigating magistrate the documents from the tax audit still in progress, according to the judicial Source.

The provision of these documents in the procedure could postpone the outcome of the procedure and modify the conclusions.

While according to a Source close to the matter, the investigation concerns “the organization of Mulliez companies and holdings” in general “rather than individual abuses”, the Mulliez Family Association (AFM), which brings together the heirs of the family, said they were “totally calm” regarding a procedure “devoid of any basis. »

“No tax benefit”, says the family

“We explained the perfect regularity of the operations examined. Their sole objective is the diversification of investments abroad,” assured the association.

“Financial flows are completely transparent and are part of a logic of economic development. No tax benefit was sought, no tax benefit was realized. None,” insisted the AFM.




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