Tag Archives: Bank Leumi

IRS Catches Big Fish

20 Jun

The nets of the IRS have, again, been cast out on the waters and this time, they caught some big fish when they hauled in the net. The Wall Street Journal broke the news in an article published on June 18th, just two days ago. You can read it at the WSJ.com website online here. I wholeheartedly agree with their comment that it is not coincidental that the U.S. Treasury made this announcement of their indictments now. The final date for your FBAR form to arrive in their offices just happens to be 10 days from now. That means you’d better get them done NOW as they have to arrive in the IRS offices by that date. This is for YOU, even if, as I am, you are a little fish. They’ll use you as bait for the big fish that they really want to catch.

It is also becoming clearer to me why I am being harassed by the IRS. It is all part of their witch hunt, looking for the big bucks to fill their empty coffers. The fishing analogy is one that I have been using since I started writing this blog when they came after me under the guise that my name was chosen by their computers for an audit to learn how they can improve their services. Yeah! Who do they think they are kidding? It’s a fishing expadition, and the WSJ article states, “Now the U.S. government is casting a wider net.”

As we have written, it started in Switzerland and is now spreading to Israel. Hey, this just happens to be where I live! Three Big Fish, according to the WSJ, three Israeli-Americans, set up corporations that held secret accounts at two Israeli banks based in Tel Aviv. These banks were not named, however, it is clear to me that one must be Bank Leumi. Apparently the indictment states that “”Bank A” describes itself as having more than 336 branches in 18 countries, with “loyal and discreet” bankers and a “premier position in the world of international private banking.” All you have to do is an internet search using these statements and it leads you to the website of Bank Leumi Luxembourg. The indictment said “Bank B” is a midsize institution with a “world-wide presence on four continents” that maintains “total discretion” on behalf of clients. I couldn’t find the name of “Bank B” so you’ll have to do the work yourself to find out or you can just wait.

The three accused Israeli-American accountants set up corporations in beautiful Belize that held secret accounts at the two Israeli bank’s Switzerland and Luxembourg branches on behalf of six clients. And we are talking about big money here. The indictment didn’t disclose the total amount hidden in the accounts but for only one client, known by the initials A.F., the defendants transferred $1.9 million to one of the Israeli banks. Multiply that by six and you’ll have some idea of the extent of this tax evasion.

No doubt the U.S. Treasury will bring these banks to justice. And the next step for the IRS will be to force these banks to make further revelations about the accounts of their customers who are U.S. persons. We will certainly hear more about these IRS catches in the near future and their success will also fuel their further fishing expeditions. I say, “All the more power to them.” But they can still be careful and not do harm to the innocent. They should have zero tolerance for collateral damage. Leave us small fry, honest citizens, who eek out a meager living working hard, but just happen to be expats, alone.

What say you?