Paris (AFP)

The state has earned 5.6 billion euros in tax recovery in the first nine months of 2019, against 4 billion euros in the same period in 2018, announced Wednesday the Minister of Public Accounts Gerald Darmanin.

"This is a 40% increase in the money that is in the coffers of the state," welcomed the minister who presented the assessment of the anti-fraud law passed last year, and which has in particular softened the "Bercy lock".

This amount includes the 465 million euros paid by Google (in addition to a fine of 500 million euros) to close the recovery proceedings against him.

This regulation was obtained under one of the new provisions of the anti-fraud law passed last year. This is the possibility for a company to negotiate a fine without trial and without going through a procedure of "pleading guilty".

In addition to Google, this mechanism, dubbed the Public Interest Judicial Convention (CJIP), was used again this year, with the company Carmignac Gestion, which was fined 30 million euros.

The anti-fraud law has also eased the "lock Bercy", now requiring the tax administration to submit to justice the facts of the most serious tax fraud (beyond an amount of 100,000 euros).

This easing resulted in 587 disclosures between 1 January and 30 September, which correspond to approximately 211 million euros of recalled fees and penalties.

"The administration wasted no time" to implement the law, welcomed Gerald Darmanin, from the headquarters of the Tax Control Department of Ile-de-France in Saint-Denis, adding that efficiency in tax collection was "a popular demand that (the government) has heard".

This law "is a key element of the republican pact and which strengthens the values ​​of democracy," said justice minister Nicole Belloubet, hailing the cooperation between the national prosecutor's office and the tax administration.

In total, the judicial authority was seized more than 1,100 times for cases of tax fraud between January 1 and September 30, twice more than last year at the same date.

To the denunciations are added 481 complaint filings after favorable opinion of the Commission of the fiscal offenses and 38 complaints for presumption of tax evasion.

In addition, the law has allowed the use of the "guilty plea" mechanism in tax matters, with 9 procedures since the beginning of the year.

© 2019 AFP