McDonald’s ready to pay more than a billion euros to avoid prosecution in France

French justice suspects the multinational of having artificially decrease its profits in France by means of royalties paid to its European parent company based in Luxembourg.

Le Monde with AFP

McDonald’s has agreed to pay more than a billion euros fine in France to avoid criminal proceedings for tax fraud, as part of an agreement which must still be validated Thursday morning by French justice, A Learn the agency France-Presse (AFP), Wednesday, June 15, of concordant sources.

This fine, proposed by the National Financial Public Prosecutor’s Office (PNF) within the framework of a legal convention of public interest (CJIP), must receive the approval of a siege judge and “exceeds one billion euros “, According to one of these sources, partially confirming information from several media.

Its payment would allow the fast food giant to avoid prosecution after a preliminary survey started in 2016. Solicited by AFP, neither the PNF nor McDonald’s commented on this information.

French justice has suspected McDonald’s, in the crosshairs of the French tax authorities since 2014, to have artificially decrease its profits in France by means of royalties paid to its European parent company based in Luxembourg.

A preliminary survey had been opened in early 2016 by the PNF, after the filing of a complaint of union elected officials against McDonald’s France for “laundering tax fraud in organized gang”.

“fine dissuasive “

The mentioned fine is “colossal”, praised the former anti -corruption magistrate Eva Joly, who became a lawyer for these complainants, with her daughter Caroline Joly. The two lawyers specified their hope that the CJIP will be approved on Thursday, “a pis-aller” acceptable in view of “the state of size of French justice”. “The size of the fine is dissuasive” and risks “changing the practices of large groups” in terms of transfer prices, also praised Eva and Caroline Joly, joined by phone.

The CGT McDonald’s Paris and Ile-de-France praised a “historic victory” in a press release. The questioned system makes employees “doubly victims”, they noted:

As workers, we cannot harvest the fruits of our work; As citizens, we go to the cash register to pay the tax that McDonald’s does not pay.

Their lawyers have specified that employees could act “within the framework of civil jurisdictions” to obtain compensation for their damage.

In September 2018, the European Union had deemed legal tax treatment legal awarded by Luxembourg to McDonald’s, thus sparing the king of the Big Mac, unlike other American giants, such as Apple, condemned to reimburse taxes not paid.

McDonald’s France was the subject of a search in May 2016 at its headquarters by the investigators of the Central Office to Combat Corruption and Financial and Fiscal Offenses (OCLCIFF). Several ex-groups from the group had been placed in police custody in early 2021.

/Media reports.