Swiss bank UBS ordered to stand tax-fraud trial in France

By PHILIPPE SOTTO
Associated Press

PARIS (AP) -- Swiss bank UBS AG has been ordered to stand trial in France for allegedly helping wealthy French clients evade the country's tax authorities after it rejected as too pricey an out-of-court settlement offer from prosecutors.

A French judicial official said Monday that investigating judges found the charges against the Zurich-based bank serious and strong enough to send the case to trial at a later date.

UBS AG said in a statement it disagrees with "the allegations, assumptions and legal interpretations being made" and that it will continue to "strongly defend ourselves."

The official said UBS AG is set to appear in a French criminal court under charges of illegal bank soliciting and aggravated money laundering. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to publicly discuss the decision.