The regional director for the Special Tax Inspectorate (known as the “ISI”), Karel Anthonissen, had a federal police hearing on Monday on his contacts with politicians and journalists. De Tijd reveals on Tuesday that he was not interrogated as a witness, but as a suspect. His private e-mails and messages were searched by investigators.
Karel Anthonissen, who heads up the West and East Flanders ISI divisions, but who is currently subject to investigation, is suspected of having leaked more than 300 names of large companies, recognised institutions and company directors. These had received large tax demands from the ISI in 2014. Moreover, in November of last year, De Tijd had published data from this list.
During the hearing, the director was shown various messages that he had sent, in previous years, to politicians and journalists. Investigators have also looked into exchanges between the man and the press, so as to attempt to uncover the secret of these sources. Karel Antonissen has already denied leaking this information. Despite all evidence to the contrary, the courts seem to consider him as the prime suspect in this case. Antonissen says that he is a victim of an operation seeking to harm both him and his reputation.