Tax Criminal Law

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Foreign Banks and Bankers Face New Risks From Swiss Bank Amnesty

The first non-prosecution agreement signals expanded US tax enforcement opportunities at home and abroad. The US Department of Justice (DOJ) has announced the first non-prosecution agreement (NPA) with BSI, SA, (BSI)...more

On the Eve of Tax Day, DOJ Gently Reminds Taxpayers to File Timely and Accurate Returns

Every year as April 15 approaches, we observe an uptick in the frequency of Internal Revenue Service and Justice Department press releases announcing criminal charges against individuals accused of violating the tax laws. ...more

Romania: Back-Tax (an update)

As we previously reported the law for the approval of GEO 92/2014 is currently discussed in the working commissions of the Chamber of Deputies in the Romanian Parliament....more

DOJ Announces First Non-Prosecution Agreement Under the Swiss Bank Program

On March 30, 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that it reached the first non-prosecution agreement under the Swiss bank program with BSI, S.A. (BSI). BSI, one of Switzerland's ten largest banks, has agreed...more

DOJ Announces Major Policy Change on Use of Asset Forfeiture for Structuring Offenses

We previously reported that the Internal Revenue Service had been criticized for its controversial, yet legal, practice of seizing bank accounts when the account holder is suspected of engaging in “structuring.” ...more

BSI Account Holders Now Face 50 Percent Penalty On All Undisclosed Offshore Accounts

On Monday, March 30, 2015, the Department of Justice (the "Department") announced its first settlement under the Swiss Bank Program, potentially exposing thousands of U.S. taxpayers to a steep 50 percent penalty for failure...more

BSI Is First Bank to Reach Resolution in DOJ’s Program for Swiss Banks

BSI of Lugano, Switzerland, became the first bank to earn a non-prosecution agreement under the U.S. DOJ’s Program for Swiss Banks, paying a penalty of $211 million. First announced on August 29, 2013, the program offered...more

First bank resolution announced by DOJ: US taxpayers advised that time is running out to come forward

On March 30, 2015, the US Department of Justice announced the first non-prosecution agreement entered into by a Swiss bank pursuant to the Swiss Bank Program and advised US taxpayers with secret offshore bank accounts that...more

Ex-Credit Suisse Bankers Sentenced to Probation in Exchange for Cooperation

On March 27, 2015, a judge in the Eastern District of Virginia sentenced former Credit Suisse bankers Josef Doerig and Andreas Bachmann to five years of probation. Their sentences were the result of their cooperation with the...more

DOJ Announces First Swiss Bank to Reach Resolution Under Swiss Bank Program

Today the Justice Department announced that BSI SA of Lugano, Switzerland, one of the 10 largest private banks in Switzerland, is the first bank to reach a resolution under the Department of Justice’s Swiss Bank Program....more

IRS Will Adopt “Common Sense” Approach To Structured Activity In Bank Accounts

Why it matters - In response to recent criticism, the Commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) John A. Koskinen announced that the agency will adopt a “common sense” approach in how it handles funds that have...more

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

News from Second and State

As another relatively quiet session week comes to a close, our embattled row officers continue to make headlines. On Tuesday, two weeks after being charged, former Pennsylvania Treasurer Rob McCord appeared in federal court...more

IRS Scrutinizes Captive Insurance

Every year the IRS issues a list of tax scams pertinent to that filing season. This list is commonly referred to as the (“Dirty Dozen”). The Dirty Dozen warns taxpayers of illegal tax avoidance schemes that can lead to...more

Minnesota Weekly Legislative Update: 02/2015

This past week, commissioner salary raises were amended into deficiency funding legislation, tax committees heard a host of potential omnibus bill legislation, and additional testimony was heard on teacher tenure policy, as...more

IRS Telephone Fraud By “Mr. F-#-@-K Y-O-U”

Every year the IRS sends out its “Dirty Dozen” list. This is a compilation of the most prevalent tax scams, with the intent to inform and warn taxpayers of tax related rip-offs. The very first on the list involves...more

IRS Offers Floridians Extra Protection Against Tax-Related Identity Theft

You are most likely aware of the recent news stories about the growing problem of identity theft in the tax area. The identity theft is usually only discovered when a person goes to file their return and discovers that a tax...more

Not Paying Your Employment Taxes? Prison Time Could Be In Your Future

It is a very common story for small businesses to get behind on paying employment taxes. Federal employment taxes are largely made up of FICA and withholding taxes. The IRS is especially keen on businesses who fail to pay...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

No it is not the IRS calling. Phone scammers pretending to be the IRS

Phone scams have become a persistent and pervasive problem for many taxpayers. Scammers are able to alter caller ID numbers to make it look like the IRS is calling. ...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

How the Rise in Undercover Investigations is Changing the Law  [Video]

Jan. 19, 2015 (Mimesis Law) -- Robert Blecker, professor of law at New York Law, talks with Lee Pacchia about the dramatic rise in undercover investigations and their effect on the legal defense of entrapment....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

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