5 November 2012
"Bernd R. Fix" <bernd[ar]wauland.de> sends:
The automatic translation of the German original text from http://wauland.de
on your website at http://cryptome.org/2012/11/whs-tax-exempt-revoked.htm
is now obsolete; there is an english version of the statement on
Postfach 65 04 43 H O L L A N D
22364 Hamburg/Germany S T I F T U N G
4 November 2012
WikiLeaks-Wau Holland Tax-Exemption Revoked
ON OUR OWN BEHALF -- November 5th, 2012
Charitable status of the
Wau Holland Foundation
History of the revocation
The fiscal authorities in Kassel revoked  the charitable status of the
Wau Holland Foundation (WHF) after an intervention by the Hessian Ministry
of the Interior (,,,) towards the end of 2010. As the reason
for this decision, the authorities stated that the foundation violated the
"principle of selflessness" by collecting donations and financing the "WikiLeaks"
Under the "principle of selflessness (§ 55 AO)", a foundation may not
primarily pursue economic (commercial) purposes, but can only use the money
to further their own goals. The withdrawal of the charitable status by the
fiscal authorities is difficult to understand for two reasons. First, the
tax office had not received any accounting records from the year 2010 at
all which would justify such a decision. Second, the RP Kassel as supervisory
authority issued a press release  in early December that made it clear
that the promotion of WikiLeaks is in accordance to the statutes of the
Perhaps this is why the fiscal authorities in Hamburg, which inherited the
controversial procedure after the relocation of the Foundation, changed the
reasoning and pursued the case as a "violation of the principle of immediacy
(§ 57 AO)" instead.
Auditing and legal procedure
The WHF commissioned a law firm specializing in foundation and tax law to
represent their interests and put an objection against the decision .
In subsequent proceedings, there was an audit of whether the Foundation had
met the "requirement of immediacy" in 2010; the question of whether the
foundation spent its money according to its statutes was no longer in dispute.
The "principle of immediacy" allows a non-profit organization to engage auxiliary
staff to achieve its goals, but requires that it must establish traceable
and binding control procedures.
In late 2009 and early 2010 the WHF had negotiated oral agreements with the
"WikiLeaks" project; these arrangements were written down in a contract with
a WikiLeaks project manager at the end of 2010. The written contract defined
the objectives, responsibilities and the control processes for receiving
money from the foundation. Although the spirit this contract had been adhered
to by all parties involved throughout the whole of 2010, the tax office does
not acknowledge that the immediacy was preserved and rejected our appeal
against the decision after an 18 month audit .
To finally bring and end to these proceedings after all this time, the WHF
agreed with the tax office in Hamburg not to further appeal against this
rejection  and to regain charitable status for the year 2011 and beyond.
We have learned through this process what contractual conditions are needed
to finance projects of the foundation. Unfortunately we must inform all donors
from 2010 that their donations are not tax deductible. Nevertheless, these
donations were used for the purposes specified by the donor.
When we receive the promised charitable status from the tax office, we can
send out donation receipts for the years 2011 and 2012. For donations up
to 200,- Euro (accumulated), it is sufficient for the donor to present the
payment document together with the charitable status document, which can
then be downloaded from this website.
The projects that are promoted by the Wau Holland Foundation can be found
by clicking here.
We appreciate every donation; click here to see how you can donate. For questions
about donations please contact us using our
between the Interior and Regional Council
of foundation supervision (2010-12-10)
supervision of Interior Minister (2010-12-16)
Minister of Supervision of the Foundation (2011-01-05)
of exempt status by the FA Kassel (2011-01-07)
to the tax office decision (2011-01-11)
decision of the Tax Office Hamburg-Nord (2012-10-25)
waiver of WHS (2012-10-29)