The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has rejected a challenge by Swiss banking giant UBS to overturn a bail ordered by the French court over its alleged role in French tax evasion case.
UBS approached ECHR in 2015 after being ordered by the French court to pay bail of €1.1bn for allegedly helping wealthy French clients open secret bank accounts to dodge tax.
UBS said that the hefty bond violated its right to the presumption of innocence. The challenge was however rejected by the human rights court, which termed its ruling as unanimous.
“The Court held that the security required constituted an interim measure which did not prejudge the outcome of the proceedings and that the amount had been assessed by the domestic judges, using particularly thorough reasoning, on the basis of the findings of the investigations, the alleged facts, the scale of the offences and the potential harm, and the fine payable in the event of a conviction,” ECHR said.
UBS however, did not agree with the court's reasoning, saying that it would “continue to strive for a solution to the proceedings in France”.
“The facts do not support the magnitude of the bail and we have a fiduciary responsibility to protect both the financial and reputational interests of our stakeholders,” the Swiss bank said.