More than 6,000 Israelis appear on list of secret Swiss bank accounts


JERUSALEM (JTA) — More than 6,000 Israelis have secret bank accounts at the Swiss branch of the HSBC British bank that had documents leaked to the Internet.

The documents leaked Monday, which showed 100,000 private individuals from over 200 countries holding the secret bank accounts, were obtained by the Washington-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. The group shared them with several media organizations, and they were published by The Guardian newspaper and the BBC’s “Panorama” program.

The 6,222 Israeli-connected people on the list, which is from 2007, reportedly hold some $10 billion in the accounts. Seventeen of the Israelis hold a total of over $100 million. Only about half of those on the list associated with Israel hold Israeli citizenship, according to the documents.

Israel is ranked sixth among the countries whose citizens deposited money at the bank after Switzerland, the United Kingdom, Venezuela, the United States and France. The Israeli accounts were opened between 1922 and 2006.

Among those appearing on the list are banker Edmond Safra, Israeli-Canadian oil trader Jonathan Kollek, diamond dealer Beny Steinmetz and Rabbi Yoshiyahu Pinto.

Recommended from JTA