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November 2014: White Collar Litigation Update

The Future of the Department of Justice’s High Visibility Offshore Tax Evasion Initiative. On August 29, 2013, the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) Tax Division announced the Program for Non-Prosecution Agreements...more

Significant Setbacks to U.S. War on Offshore Tax Evasion with Two Not Guilty Verdicts for Offshore Bankers

As reported in this blog and elsewhere over the past few weeks, Raoul Weil was on trial in Florida for conspiring with U.S. taxpayers to hide their assets from the IRS through secret accounts held at UBS AG. Weil was the...more

U.S. Will Disclose Swiss Bank Information

The Department of Justice (DOJ) recently made demand of 106 Swiss banks for information and cooperation under the terms of proposed Non-prosecution agreements (NPA). Non-prosecution agreements were offered to Swiss banks in...more

Swiss Banks Pushing Back on Scope of Agreement with U.S. under Amnesty Program

As reported yesterday by David Voreacos, Giles Broom, and Jeffrey Vogeli, 73 of the over 100 Swiss banks that enrolled in the Justice Department’s amnesty program for Swiss banks have written an 11-page letter requesting...more

New Hampshire Man Pleads Guilty Regarding Accounts in Switzerland, Israel, and Jersey

On October 20, 2014, Menashe Cohen pleaded guilty in New Hampshire federal court to one count of filing a false income tax return for failing to report the existence of his Swiss and Israeli bank accounts on his 2009 tax...more

Former UBS Banker Trial Begins in Florida

Opening statements were heard on Tuesday and the first government witness testified yesterday in the trial of ex-UBS AG banking executive Raoul Weil. Prosecutors have sought to show him as the driving force behind the bank’s...more

Tax Lessons from Reality Stars on What Not to Do

Two reality stars recently made headlines for being prosecuted for tax crimes and fraud. In both cases, the reality stars surely knew that consequences were coming: one was the subject of an IRS criminal investigation, and...more

Forensic Accountant and Certified Fraud Examiner Pleads Guilty to Concealing UBS Account

On October 3, 2014, according to a U.S. Attorney’s Office press release and court records, Howard Bloomberg, a forensic accountant and certified fraud examiner, pleaded guilty to one count of failure to file an FBAR reporting...more

IRS Issues FATCA Fraud Alert

As part of its continuing efforts to combat the serious problem of identity theft, the Internal Revenue Service warned today that fraudsters have expanded their widening schemes to obtain identity information to foreign...more

ICSID tribunal refuses to allow state to recommence criminal investigation that would disrupt arbitration proceedings

In Lao Holdings NV v The Lao People's Democratic Republic, an ICSID tribunal (constituted to resolve Holdings' bilateral investment treaty (BIT) claim against Laos) recently dismissed an application by Laos to modify a...more

Offshore Voluntary Discloure; Is it too late

September 15, 2014 is an important for taxpayer who maintained accounts at any of 106 Swiss banks (participating banks) that are participating in the Department of Justice non-prosecution program. Here is why....more

Bandfield Confirms Aggressive FATCA Enforcement Tactics

On Sept. 9, 2014, in U.S v. Robert Bandfield et al., federal prosecutors in the Eastern District of New York announced the indictment of a U.S. citizen and others, including offshore corporate service providers (CSPs) and...more

FATCA Violation Underlies Latest US Tax and Securities Fraud Charges

Indictment demonstrates the strength of US law enforcement efforts to combat offshore fraud and is the first to charge a FATCA violation. On September 9, 2014, in US v. Robert Bandfield, et al., federal prosecutors in...more

How to Avoid Corruption Risks in China [Video]

The recent headlines on China's expanding anti-corruption investigation and enforcement action is a significant event in global anti-corruption enforcement. For companies operating in China, the risks have now increased...more

American Pleads Guilty to Hiding Money in Swiss Bank, Moving Money to Israeli Bank after UBS Scandal

On August 19, 2014, Bernard Kramer pleaded guilty in the Southern District of New York to conspiracy to defraud the United States and filing a false income tax return relating to his concealment of “at least $1.1 million” in...more

What Does a Fiduciary Do When Advised of an Offshore Account?

On June 18, 2014 the IRS announced changes to the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP). The changes include the following...more

Forget About Hiding Money Offshore!

On July 21, 2014 the OECD released the full version of a new global standard for the exchange of financial information in tax matters “OECD\Standard for Automatic Exchange of Financial Account Information in Tax Matters”...more

Part VI – Willful Or Non-Willful Offshore Omissions & Conclusion

Below is Part 6 and the conclusion of my partner, Rick Josepher’s, analysis of the new offshore enforcement environment in light of the new 2014 Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Procedures....more

Part V - Minimizing Risk Of Criminal Prosicution By Meeting Requirements For A Voluntary Discover In IRM 9.5.11.9

Below is Part 5 of my partner, Rick Josepher’s, analysis of the new offshore enforcement environment in light of the new 2014 Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Procedures....more

Treasury’s FinCEN Proposes Rules Forcing U.S. Financial Institutions to Collect Data for FATCA Reciprocity

On July 30, 2014, the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) proposed rules requiring U.S. financial institutions to collect “Customer Due Diligence” information, including identifying the true...more

Focus on Tax Controversy and Litigation - July 2014

In this issue: - Supreme Court Limits Taxpayer’s Ability to Examine the IRS at a Summons Enforcement Hearing - Court Determines Tax Analysis not Protected by Attorney-Client Privilege and Work Product Doctrine...more

Can an OVDP Participant Set Aside a Closing Agreement on the Theory of Duress?

It has been just over five years since the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) offered the first of three offshore voluntary disclosure programs for individuals with undisclosed foreign financial accounts. Since the announcement...more

False Foreign Gift Claims and Wire Fraud

A scheme that some dual national taxpayers have used involves claiming exemption from foreign jurisdiction taxation because they are U.S. taxpayers and then not reporting the offshore account or its income as required by U.S....more

"Latest Swiss Cross-Border Tax Investigation Reflects Wider US Enforcement Agenda"

Authorities in the U.S. continue to crack down on foreign financial institutions that have allegedly aided U.S. taxpayers in evading their tax obligations. On May 19, 2014, Credit Suisse AG pled guilty to conspiracy to aid...more

Former Head of DOJ Tax Division Warns Taxpayers to Think Twice Before Choosing New Streamlined Procedures

Former DOJ Tax Division AAG Kathy Keneally warned on June 24, 2014, that taxpayers should think carefully before signing a certification of non-willfulness and entering the IRS’s new Streamlined Filing Compliance Procedures....more

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