The IRS recently published some preliminary statistics concerning the 2011 offshore voluntary disclosure initiative. Approximately 12,000 individuals came forward and turned over some $500 million to the IRS. But the revenue the IRS collected, although important, may only be the tip of the iceberg.
Remember, one of the conditions taxpayers had to agree to under this special tax relief program was to divulge names of banks and bankers that may have aided them in hiding their money offshore. The information obtained from taxpayers who came forward under the 2011 amnesty program is likely even more valuable than the revenue that has been collected to date. This intelligence, and the publicity it will generate, is expected to change the way people think about offshore accounts. They are not as safe and secret as they once were.
Eight offshore banks now face federal grand jury investigations, but the US Department of Justice is not naming any names.
By strategically timing its voluntary disclosure programs in tandem with the Tax Division’s civil and criminal litigation efforts, the IRS has been able to obtain significant additional information about those who have helped to facilitate tax fraud — information that is extremely important to tax administration and is expected to lead to additional criminal investigations. ~ US Dept. of Justice