Monday, November 3, 2014

Ex-UBS Exec & Ex-Mizrahi Banker Found Not Guilty In Tax Evasion Trials!

According to Law360, Miami (November 03, 2014, 5:04 PM ET) -- Jurors in federal court in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, found former UBS AG executive Raoul Weil not guilty of conspiracy to defraud the United States for his alleged role in helping nearly 20,000 U.S. clients hide $20 billion in assets from the Internal Revenue Service.

The decision comes as a significant blow to federal prosecutors, who had focused their efforts on convicting Weil, formerly the third-ranked officer at the Swiss banking giant as the head of its wealth management and business banking division and the most senior individual they targeted.

According to Bloomberg this comes on the heels of Friday's (October 31, 2014) acquittal of a retired senior vice president at Israeli-based Mizrahi Tefahot Bank Ltd. in Los Angeles federal court on charges he helped U.S. customers conceal their assets from the Internal Revenue Service. 

Jurors deliberated four hours before clearing Shokrollah Baravarian, 82, of conspiring to defraud the U.S. and helping Mizrahi clients prepare false tax returns. Prosecutors claimed Baravarian helped clients who opened accounts in Israel, didn’t declare them to the IRS and accessed money through loans from the Los Angeles branch.

These acquittals represent a substantial setback 
to the seven-year U.S. campaign to curtail offshore tax evasion. 
Prosecutors have charged more than 70 taxpayers and three dozen offshore bankers, lawyers and advisers. More than 45,000 Americans avoided prosecution by voluntarily disclosing their offshore accounts to the IRS, paying $6.5 billion in taxes, penalties and interest. For a detailed list of successful federal prosecutions thus far, go to our post dated Friday, April 11, 2014 "Offshore Prosecutions Strikes Fear into US Taxpayers."
These 2 recent losses in foreign banker/promoter cases may have a chilling effect on the DoJ's desire to obtain prison terms for bankers/promoters currently under investigation and could possibly cause the DoJ to also rethink prison terms for U.S. Taxpayers with undisclosed offshore accounts. 

According to a Forbes article "DOJ Wants Prison For Undisclosed Offshore Accounts" the IRS and Justice Department want more prison time. They hoped to make an example of a decidedly fat cat, Beanie Babies creater Ty Warner. He is ranked #663 of Billionaires and #209 on the Forbes 400. Mr. Warner already plead guilty to criminal charges over a Swiss account and paid a whopping $53M for Offshore Tax Evasion.

But at his sentencing, he got probation, and that lack of Jail Time made prosecutors mad. The feds wanted at least a year behind bars. The 69-year-old entrepreneur’s lawyers argued successfully that he should get off with probation and community service because of his age and good works. Government appeals of sentences are not common.

The feds have lost few cases related to offshore accounts. The last thing they want is to look to be going easy on the ultra-wealthy. The U.S. has always taxed worldwide income, but it turns out more Americans had secret offshore accounts than ever could have been imagined. Government victories have been astounding. 

However, after these two back-to-back losses within days of each other and the resulting failure to convict both Raoul Weil and Shokrollah Baravarian; the IRS  may have to reconsider its policy.

Have Un-Reported Income From an Offshore Bank?

Value Your Freedom?

 Taxpayers who wish to take advantage of the OVDP 
Must Act Quickly!  

Contact the Tax Lawyers at
Marini & Associates, P.A.
for a FREE Tax Consultation Contact US at
or Toll Free at 888-8TaxAid (888 882-9243) 

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