International Trade Tax Criminal Law

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FinCEN Blacklists Banca Privada d’Andorra

On March 10, 2015, FinCEN designated Banca Privada d’Andorra, based in the Principality of Andorra, as a foreign financial institution of primary money-laundering concern pursuant to Section 311 of the USA PATRIOT Act...more

How Not to Use Bitcoin

The use of Bitcoin has both legal and potentially illegal applications. Bitcoin is just a contemporary version of the Informal Value Transfer System, (“IVTS”) which in some countries is known as the Hawala. The IVTS has been...more

New York Restaurateur Pleads Guilty to Hiding Money in Swiss Accounts

On February 19, 2015, Georges Briguet, the owner of New York restaurant Le Perigord, pleaded guilty to one count of corruptly endeavoring to obstruct the IRS by concealing the existence of his Swiss bank accounts. According...more

Former Wegelin Banker Reportedly Arrested on U.S. Warrant in Germany

Multiple outlets are reporting that on February 2, 2015, three years after his indictment in the Southern District of New York, Swiss banker Roger Keller was arrested at the Frankfurt airport. On January 3, 2012, the U.S....more

IRS Focus: Offshore Tax Evasion Tops Dirty Dozen List

The IRS issued two New Releases this week that restate its focus on offshore tax evasion. The first was January 29, 2015 which followed the First International Criminal Tax Symposium....more

The Year in White-Collar Crime: A Look Back Helps Us See Ahead

The Justice Department’s white-collar agenda in 2014 was marked by skyrocketing corporate settlements and continued reliance on deferred and non-prosecution agreements, coupled with compliance monitors. Several significant...more

Bank Leumi Enters Into DPA with U.S. Department of Justice

A major Israeli international bank admitted that it conspired to aid and assist U.S. taxpayers to prepare and present false tax returns to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) by hiding income and assets in offshore bank...more

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

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