Bloomberg news reports that on March 18, 2014, U.S. Senators Carl Levin and John McCain wrote a letter urging the Justice Department to seek extradition of about 30 Swiss bankers and others who are charged with enabling offshore tax evasion and failed to appear in federal courts. McCain and Levin, who lead the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, issued a report last month criticizing the Justice Department’s enforcement efforts involving Swiss banks and implored the DOJ to “at least attempt to use” powers under an extradition treaty with the Swiss.
“This certainly adds to the already intense pressure on the Department of Justice to be aggressive in offshore tax enforcement,” said Jim Mastracchio, co-chair of BakerHostetler’s Tax Controversy practice and chair of the firm’s Criminal Tax Defense group. Jay Nanavati, a member of the firm’s Criminal Tax Defense group and a former prosecutor at the Department of Justice Tax Division added, “It remains to be seen whether fugitive Swiss bankers will be able to remain beyond the reach of the U.S. justice system by staying in Switzerland.”