Germany tightens rules for tax cheats

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BERLIN (AP) — Germany is tightening rules that allow tax evaders to escape punishment if they come clean, a move that follows the conviction in March of soccer powerhouse Bayern Munich's ex-president.

The Cabinet on Wednesday approved legislation extending the statute of limitations on tax evasion to 10 years. It currently expires after five years in many cases.

Until now, people who confess to evading less than 50,000 euros ($64,300) haven't had to pay extra to authorities; above that level, they paid a 5 percent surcharge. In the future, tax cheats who confess will pay 10 percent extra for evading 25,000 euros or more.

Bayern's ex-president Uli Hoeness is serving a 3 ½-year prison sentence for evading millions through an undeclared Swiss account. He turned himself in, but his declaration was ruled incomplete.

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