Former UK watchdog brands HSBC's tax evasion scheme 'serious criminal activity'

London, Feb 23 - A former Director of Public Prosecutions has accused banking giant HSBC of "grave" cross border crime and of engaging in "a systematic and profitable collusion in serious criminal activity" in the UK.

According to the Independent, in a damming intervention Lord Ken Macdonald, who led the Crown Prosecution Service until 2008, said there existed "credible evidence" of HSBC's involvement in "grave" cross border crimes that should have been the subject of urgent and "sustained criminal investigation".

He said that the decision by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs to not launch a probe into allegations of tax evasion by HSBC was "seriously legally flawed".

Lord MacDonald stressed that there was clear evidence that " HSBC Swiss and/or its employees have engaged over many years in systematic and profitable collusion in serious criminal activity against the exchequers of a number of countries".

He further said that it was also clear that "criminal activity has taken place within the context of an institutional cynicism that is deeply shocking," the report added. (ANI)