Scott Michel Featured on Nightly Business Report's Whistleblower Series
CNBC's Nightly Business Report spoke with Scott D. Michel on how UBS whistleblower, Bradley Birkenfeld, helped lead to the unraveling of Swiss bank secrecy. Please visit CNBC's website to view the video.
SCOTT MICHEL, CAPLIN & DRYSDALE ATTORNEY: He was instrumental in the unraveling of Swiss bank secrecy. There`s no question about that.
JAVERS: Scott Michel is an attorney specializing in tax litigation.
MICHEL: It started with Brad Birkenfeld where the unraveling of bank secrecy when from a small group of cases to UBS generally, to other banks in Switzerland, to the Swiss banking community as a whole.
JAVERS: Birkenfeld`s inside information has so far resulted in some of Switzerland`s biggest and best known banks paying about $3 billion in penalties and cause more than 50,000 Americans to confess to secretly stashing money offshore. The price for their actions: a whopping $7 billion in penalties to date. Yet little more than 100 bankers and clients have been indicted, and of those, only a handful have received any prison time at all.
The names of the vast majority of those tax cheats are still a well- kept secret under IRS offshore voluntary disclosure program rules.
MICHEL: Nearly all of them had to admit that they were breaking the law — that in exchange for that, they received protection from the Internal Revenue Service against criminal prosecution.