Four more banks avoid criminal charges by paying DoJ fines

The US Department of Justice (DoJ) revealed last week that they have cut deals with four more Swiss banks so that they are not prosecuted for helping Americans evade taxes.

Societe Generale Private Banking, MediBank AG, LBBW AG, and Scobag Privatbank AG have all agreed to pay penalties which range from $9,090 to $1.36 million according to their settlement under the voluntary programme that the department launched in 2013.

The programme was put in place to enable banks to pay fines to avoid criminal charges by disclosing information on cross-border activities that helped US account holders hide their assets. Alongside this, banks must also provide account information on the US taxpayers under investigation.

Earlier this year, three banks settled under the agreement and more are expected to do so within the next few months. HSBC’s Swiss private bank was excluded from the programme because it was already under investigation for criminal activity.

Thomson Reuters reported that Caroline Ciraolo, acting assistant attorney general, said that the DoJ is now using the information supplied by the banks in the program to investigate account holders and bank employees.

There is no safe haven,” Ciraolo said.


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