Wyden Continues Investigation Into Foreign Banks Enabling U.S. Tax Evasion
After Finding Credit Suisse Helped U.S. Citizens Transfer Large, Unreported Fortunes, New Letters to Four Overseas Banks Seek Answers on Potential Ongoing Tax Evasion
Washington, D.C. – Following the release of a two-year investigation that found Credit Suisse enabled ongoing, potentially criminal tax evasion by failing to report the outflow of fortunes belonging to U.S. citizens -- a violation of its 2014 plea agreement with the Department of Justice (DOJ) -- Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) expanded his inquiry with letters to four overseas banks that received funds transferred out of Credit Suisse.
The banks that were sent letters are Union Bancaire Privée (UBP) and PKB Privatbank (PKB), both based in Switzerland, Israel-based Bank Leumi, and Andbank, based in Andorra.
The letters ask for details about the banks’ relationships with a family of dual U.S.-Latin American nationals whose undeclared overseas fortune, hidden from the IRS by Credit Suisse, was uncovered by Senator Wyden’s Credit Suisse investigation. The letters also ask what steps, if any, the banks have taken to comply with the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) in this case, as well as information on the banks’ internal procedures for identifying American clients and complying with U.S. bank reporting laws.
Three of the banks, UBP, PKB and Bank Leumi, have preexisting non-prosecution agreements with the DOJ, and any potential role in helping U.S. citizens evade taxes could represent major violations of those agreements. All four are required by law to comply with FATCA.
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