After our annual general meeting, held in Épinal on March 14th, Antoine wrote a Facebook post (in french), notably expressing his gratitude to the numerous persons who support him. This is an english translation of his words:
6 weeks only before the trial begins, people attending the annual general meeting celebrated the first anniversary of the support committee. It was a dynamic and stimulating meeting, also steeped in anxiety and emotion. I tried to thank in person my numerous supporters (forgive me not to name them all here), but the words got stuck in my throat. As Denis Robert said, receiving help is an unnatural experience. In fact –despite welcoming it with heartfelt gratitude– I never called for this support as an individual.
First, your support to a whistleblower shows to whomever may be on the fence about acting in good conscience that there is hope to be surrounded with numerous citizens convinced that the general interest shall prevail.
Moreover, I am convinced that this wonderful mobilisation is, foremost, serving the fight against unfair tax practices. Since 2014, from Washington, to Sydney, to Brussels, (almost) everyone condemned these practices. They were qualified as “harmful”/“unacceptable”/“disloyal”/“contrary to ethical and moral codes”, and so on. A Luxembourg Minister even mentioned deception. But today, those who revealed these practices face jail and a fine that exceeds a lifelong income.
I am well aware that the trial I’m facing in Luxembourg is far beyond myself, my former employer, or even Luxembourg. Tax rulings practices that I contributed to bring to light represent only a fragment of the opaque, systematic, and aggressive tax planning strategies implemented by numerous multinational companies.
Finally, I would like to give a morale boost to the numerous whistleblowers I've be lucky to meet over the past months. Some of them experience suffering suffering much worse than mine, despite having few public visibility or support.
Thank you all, let's carry on!