US ‘intensifying’ tax evader hunt by data mining: FT

The US tax authorities “are intensifying their efforts to find tax evaders and the bankers who assist them” through the use of data collected from the Panama Papers, Swiss banks and whistleblowers who have come forward, the Financial Times is reporting today.

According to the FT report, which was filed out of the UK-based publication’s New York bureau, the US Department of Justice and Internal Revenue Service “are tracing accounts shifted by Americans from Switzerland to other countries such as Israel, Singapore and Hong Kong” in their search for undeclared assets held by Americans.

According to the publication, the US is making use of information it’s received from some of the banks it has gone after for allegedly helping Americans to avoid their US tax obligations in its efforts to pursue so-called “leavers”, or citizens who moved their accounts to other offshore locales from Switzerland. The banks have been encouraged to turn over the information about their US operations and clients, the FT notes, “and avoid sanctions in return”.

It notes that the data mining strategy coincides with a cutback in the IRS’s resources, which has seen the bureau cut its enforcement staff numbers by around a fourth since 2010.

To read the FT article on the FT‘s website, which has a paywall, click here.  The story is also available in the FT‘s Monday hard copy edition.

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