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Swiss Bank Admits to Conspiring With U.S. Taxpayers to Hide Income

Updated: Dec 6, 2023

Swiss private bank Banque Pictet et Cie SA admitted to conspiring with U.S. taxpayers and others to hide more than $5.6 billion in 1,637 secret bank accounts in Switzerland and elsewhere were able to conceal the income generated in those accounts from the IRS, the Department of Justice reports. As part of today’s resolution, Banque Pictet entered into a deferred prosecution agreement and agreed to pay approximately $122.9 million to the U.S. Treasury. This resolution is one of a series of cases by the Justice Department in connection with its investigations since 2008 into facilitation of offshore U.S. tax evasion by foreign banks. The case has been assigned to U.S. District Judge Edgardo Ramos for the Southern District of New York. “Today, Banque Pictet et Cie admitted to actively helping U.S. taxpayers use coded accounts, foreign trusts and entities, nominee beneficiaries and other deceits to conceal their income and assets abroad,” said Stuart M. Goldberg, acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General. “For this criminal conduct the bank will be paying nearly $122.9 million in restitution, disgorgement of fees and a financial penalty, and is required to fully cooperate with investigations relating to these secret accounts.”


"Rooting out financial malfeasance remains a priority for this Office, and we encourage companies and financial institutions to come to us to report wrongdoing before we come to you.” said U.S. Attorney Damian Williams for the Southern District of New York. “This case should provide a clear message to others who try to hide their assets and income offshore. Our special agents are experts in following the money, and they are the best at uncovering schemes that try to defraud the U.S. tax system,” said Jim Lee, chief of the IRS Criminal Investigation division. “Offshore tax evasion is a priority for IRS Criminal Investigation, and today’s deferred prosecution agreement with Bank Pictet collects more than $120 million owed to the U.S. government.”


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