OAN’s James Meyers
1:28 PM – Monday, December 4, 2023
A private Swiss bank has been ordered to pay $122.9 million in back taxes and penalties after admitting to helping their clients hide assets from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) between 2008 and 2014.
On Monday, federal prosecutors said Swiss private bank Pictet has entered into a deferred prosecution agreement with the Justice Department.
According to prosecutors, U.S. taxpayers with the Pictet accounts in Switzerland and elsewhere evaded almost $50 million in taxes between 2008 and 2014.
“This case should provide a clear message to others who try to hide their assets and income offshore,” Jim Lee, the chief of the IRS’ criminal investigation division, said in a statement.
Additionally, Pictet has been ordered to implement remedial measures and cooperate with the investigation. If Pictet complies with the investigation for three years, U.S. prosecutors will remove charges of conspiring to defraud the IRS.
“Pictet is pleased to have resolved this matter and will continue to take steps to ensure its clients meet their tax obligations,” the bank said in a statement.
The charges against Pictet come after Credit Suisse agreed to pay a $2.5 billion fine in 2014 for helping American clients evade taxes for decades. However, prosecutors also said that while Pictet helped adopt measures to make sure their U.S. clients complied with the law, it simultaneously helped customers store hidden funds from the IRS in offshore accounts.
According to prosecutors, the bank’s regurgitated funds include $52 million in fees that Pictet earned from the undeclared accounts, $32 million in unpaid taxes, and a $39 million additional penalty.
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