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Tax criminal law

Tax criminal law includes all laws which sanction violations of German tax laws. Depending on the nature and extent of the infringement, a distinction can be made between administrative tax offences and criminal tax offences. There is a graduated system of fines, penalty payments up to severe prison sentences. Although the Sections 369 et seq. of the Tax Code (AO) contain criminal consequences for certain breaches of tax laws, these are understood as blanket rules, i.e. open criminal regulations, which are supplemented by substantive tax law. The interconnection between the criminal blanket rules and the substantive tax law is typical for the basic criminal offences in tax law, such as tax evasion (Section 370 AO) and the negligent reduction of taxes (Section 378 AO). German criminal law also provides, if specific requirements are met, the exceptional opportunity to a person to self-report a tax evasion – avoiding any penalties as long as neither a preliminary investigation by the authorities concerning the tax evasion nor an official tax audit has been initiated yet.


If tax criminal procedures have already been initiated, an individual defense strategy must be developed as soon as possible and the defense against the accusation must start immediately. Tax evasion entails substantial demands for the redemption of the withheld tax and also the risk of a conviction to a severe fine or even up to ten years imprisonment (Section 370 paragraph 3 AO).  An early intervention by an experienced tax criminal lawyer is particularly important. Juergen Klengel advises routinely and defends clients successfully inter alia on:

  • Tax investigation and audit cases,
  • VAT evasion,
  • Cum-and-ex issues,
  • VAT carousels,
  • Corporate tax evasion,
  • Income tax evasion,
  • Wage tax evasion and
  • Gift and inheritance tax evasion.


Furthermore, Juergen Klengel has successfully been advising clients for years with the legally demanding filing of self-indictments. Such an important move requires a thorough examination of the tax situation, since incomplete self-indictments threaten the loss of impunity. As a very experienced criminal defense lawyer in tax criminal law, Juergen Klengel intervenes in the proceedings, assumes the defense and protects the accused. Besides that, he carries out the communication and the negotiations with auditors, tax investigators and prosecutors as well as the representation in court.

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