By Jonathan Davies

The Swiss public prosecutor has ordered a search of HSBC's Geneva offices, according to the AFP news agency.

Reports from Reuters claim that the offices are already being searched and an inquiry into the allegations of money-laundering has been opened.

"A search is currently underway in the premises of the bank, led by attorney general Olivier Jornot and the prosecutor Yves Bertossa," Geneva's prosecutor said.

Last week, a BBC Panorama documentary accused HSBC of helping hundreds of customers to avoid tax through its Swiss arm.

The bank later published a full-page apology in national newspapers.

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