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Apple launches legal challenge to EU tax ruling

[JURIST] Apple [corporate website] on Monday launched a legal challenge to a $14 billion tax penalty that the EU has levied against the company. The EU claimed in August that Apple took advantage of illegal state aid from Ireland, where Apple has its European Headquarters, and ordered the company to repay up to 13 billion euros. Apple claims [Reuters report] it was a convenient target for the EU because of the headlines the company generates and that the company's success caused it to be singled out.

Last month the Irish government announced [JURIST report] that it would submit its appeal within the week against the European Commission's demand that Apple pay back-taxes. In September Irish lawmakers voted to appeal the ruling [JURIST report] that would entitle the country to almost $15 billion of unpaid taxes from Apple. Finance Minister Michael Noonan [official profile] said that talks between the Fine Gael party and the Independent Alliance determined that allowing the ruling to stand could hurt Ireland's ability to attract foreign investments in the future. Enda Kenny, Prime Minister of the Republic, gave an interview [transcript] detailing how he is confident that the appeal will succeed because tax issues are a matter for each sovereign to decide, not the European Commission. Apple pays from almost 0-1 percent taxes on its profits in Ireland and the European Commission is claiming that the tech giant illegally funded profits through its Ireland headquarters to avoid higher tax payments.

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