On Friday, May 11, 2015 the The Department of Justice (DoJ ) announcedFinter Bank Zurich AG (Finter), located in Zurich, Switzerland, was the 3rd Swiss Bank to reach a resolution under the department’s Swiss Bank Program.
"I would stay tuned," Acting Assistant Attorney General Caroline Ciraolo of the Justice Department's Tax Division, adding that a number of non-prosecution agreements will be signed in the "very near future."
“Simultaneously, the department has opened investigations of culpable individuals and entities based on information obtained from the Swiss banks in the program, and will pursue and prosecute those engaged or assisting others in evading U.S. tax obligations.”
Under the program, banks are required to:
Make a complete disclosure of their cross-border activities;
Provide detailed information on an account-by-account basis for accounts in which U.S. taxpayers have a direct or indirect interest;
Cooperate in treaty requests for account information;
Provide detailed information as to other banks that transferred funds into secret accounts or that accepted funds when secret accounts were closed (a/k/a Levers List);
Agree to close accounts of account holders who fail to come into compliance with U.S. reporting obligations; and
Pay appropriate penalties.
Banks meeting all of the above requirements are eligible for a non-prosecution agreement.
According to the terms of the non-prosecution agreement signed today, Finter agrees to cooperate in any related criminal or civil proceedings, demonstrate its implementation of controls to stop misconduct involving undeclared U.S. accounts and pay a $5.414 million penalty in return for the department’s agreement not to prosecute Finter for tax-related criminal offenses. According to the terms of its non-prosecution agreement, Vadian agrees to cooperate in any related criminal or civil proceedings, demonstrate its implementation of controls to stop misconduct involving undeclared U.S. accounts and pay a $4.253 million penalty in return for the department’s agreement not to prosecute Vadian for tax-related criminal offenses.
As a result of leads from banks involved in the voluntary disclosure program, Ciraolo said, the Justice Department is going after individual account holders as well as bankers and other professionals who helped conceal offshore accounts.
While Finter Bank reached a resolution under the department’s Swiss Bank Program; its U.S. account holders who have not yet declared their accounts to the IRS may still be eligible to participate in the IRS’s offshore voluntary disclosure programs, the price of such disclosure has increased.
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