09.25.13 | Blog Posts

The DOJ Ratchets Up Its Crackdown On Swiss Bank Accounts

The Insider: White Collar Defense and Securities Enforcement

In my last post, I discussed the possibility that Bitcoins and other virtual currencies could replace Swiss bank accounts as the tax havens of the future.  Recent developments in the government’s war on offshore accounts suggest that taxpayers bent on avoiding detection of their assets will need to find a new vehicle soon.
The government’s aggressive steps to stamp out the use of bank accounts in Switzerland and other tax havens have been well documented, including here and here.  To summarize, in 2008, the government initiated a criminal investigation against Swiss banking giant, UBS.  This investigation ultimately led to a deferred prosecution agreement with UBS pursuant to which the bank paid $780 million and disclosed the identity of approximately 4,500 U.S. accountholders, as well as the criminal prosecution of one Swiss bank (Wegelin & Co.) and numerous taxpayers, bankers and other professionals. [...]

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