As 7,500 Reveal Secret Bank Accounts in 70 Countries, IRS Hunts for More
Posted Oct 15, 2009 10:50 AM CST
By Martha Neil
As 7,500 Americans came forward to reveal, before a partial amnesty deadline today, undeclared accounts in 70 countries, the Internal Revenue Service is gearing up for an enhanced effort to find more.
It has opened offices in Beijing, Sydney and Panama City and plans to hire 800 more employees, reports Bloomberg. Additional staff will be deployed to eight existing foreign offices including Barbados and Hong Kong.
Although a recent drive to crack down on United States residents who have been evading tax by hiding assets offshore has been largely focused on secret account holders at Swiss bank UBS AG, intensified future efforts to identify tax evaders and those who have helped them cheat the U.S. government will have a much broader scope, says Internal Revenue Commissioner Douglas Shulman.
“We’re going to be scouring the 7,500 disclosures to identify financial institutions, advisers and others,” he said during a conference call with Bloomberg and other media. “This entire effort is not just about UBS and a single country.”
The amount of the accounts revealed under the amnesty program, which ends at 5 p.m. today, ranged from $10,000 to $100 million, the Wall Street Journal reports.