The Real Deal Los Angeles

Italian prosecutor accuses Tom Barrack of $190M tax fraud

Allegation is over the sale of luxury Sardinian properties to Qatar Holding
June 02, 2017 02:00PM

Tom Barrack (Getty Images)

An Italian prosecutor has accused billionaire investor Tom Barrack of conspiring to evade $190 million in taxes when he sold several luxury properties in Sardinia.

Barrack, chairman of L.A.-based Colony NorthStar who also led President Trump’s inaugural committee, denied the allegations this week.

The prosecutor filed a report earlier this month saying the real estate investor led the tax scheme, Bloomberg reported.

Neither Barrack nor the 32 other individuals and companies named by the prosecutor have been charged with any crime. The filing marks the final stage before the prosecutor can request any formal indictments, according to Bloomberg.

The investigation centers around Colony’s sale of four hotels, a golf course, a marina and some undeveloped land on Sardinia’s Costa Smeralda to Qatar Holding LLC, the investment arm of the country’s sovereign-wealth fund.

The prosecutor alleges Barrack and others used a Luxembourg company to artificially load the Sardinia firm with debt to reduce taxes due from the 2012 transaction.

Barrack and Colony Capital’s attorney Daniel Petrocelli of O’Melveny & Myers said the investment firm Colony used for the sale paid all taxes owed under Luxembourg and European Union law. [Bloomberg]Subrina Hudson