U.S. Cracks Down on UBS Clients in California

Jun 21, 2011   

Our continuing coverage of the U.S. governments attack on hidden offshore assets brings us the two latest cases against UBS clients, both surfacing in California district courts. Robert Greeley of San Francisco and Sean and Nadia Roberts of Tehachapi were charged with filing false 2008 income tax returns that failed to disclose their foreign accounts. Since 2007, the government has accused more than two dozen former UBS clients of tax crimes.

On June 14, Greeley was charged with filing a 2008 tax return that failed to report two UBS accounts and the interest income earned on the accounts. Greeley allegedly held both accounts in the name of Cayman Islands entities that he controlled”one from 2002 through at least 2008, and the other from 2004 through at least 2008.

On June 20, the Justice Department announced that Sean and Nadia Roberts pleaded guilty to filing a false tax return that failed to disclose, among other foreign accounts, a secret UBS bank account. The charges culminate a string of transactions by the Robertses which effected a sham aircraft loan and filtered cash from their domestic business through various foreign accounts and entities. The Robertses admitted to the following:

  • Filing returns for tax years 2004 through 2008 that concealed their interest in the foreign accounts
  • Failing to report income on the accounts,
  • Falsely deducting transfers from their business to the accounts, and
  • Failing to file Reports of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (“FBARs”) disclosing their interests in same.
  • The couple agreed to pay $709,675 of restitution to the IRS, and a 50 percent penalty for the one year with the highest offshore balance to resolve their failure to file FBARs.

    The IRS implemented an Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Initiative in 2009”and again this year”whereby taxpayers avoid prosecution by disclosing their offshore accounts. Read our coverage of the Second Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Initiative here.

    The attorneys at Fuerst Ittleman, PL are adept in the complex regulatory requirements of the Bank Secrecy Act, foreign bank accounts, and the Internal Revenue Code. You can contact an attorney by emailing us at contact@fidjlaw.com.