Russian authorities hit Ernst & Young with hefty tax claim

Other News Materials 9 April 2008 16:25 (UTC +04:00)

(dpa) - Russian tax officials have hit accounting firm Ernst & Young with a 390-million-ruble (16.5 million dollars) claim in back-taxes, Russian daily Kommersant reported Wednesday.

The business newspaper quoted tax authorities as saying that Ernst & Young, one of the so-called Big Four accounting giants, had stashed undeclared margins in the tax haven of Cyprus since 2004.

Russian authorities hit auditor PricewaterhouseCooper (PwC) with a similarly hefty back-tax claim last year.

Ernst and Young lists more than than 1,000 companies among its clients in Moscow, including state-owned firms VTB Bank, oil giant Rosneft, automaker AvtoVAZ and Russian railways.

The financial authorities' pursuit of PwC was linked to the criminal prosecution of one of its biggest clients, Russian oil firm Yukos, which was forced into bankruptcy and whose managers were jailed over back-tax claims.