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Massachusetts man sentenced for tax evasion

A judge in New York ordered an 83-year-old Massachusetts man to pay a large civil penalty after he was found guilty of tax evasion. He is said to have hidden $5.7 million from the Internal Revenue Service.

According to authorities, the man had spent several years of his life attempting to hide his wealth from the IRS. He used Swiss bank accounts to prevent authorities from learning about his real wealth. However, Americans are required to file Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts Reports when they have a foreign bank account with a balance of more than $10,000. This man was accused of failing to file these reports from 2006 to 2011. The man's financial adviser was also charged with conspiring with United States taxpayers to hide over $184 million from tax authorities.

The man opened a bank account in Switzerland in 1995. Authorities also believe that he conspired with his financial adviser to open another account under the name of a fake corporation in order to hide the origin of his funds.
The U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York said that the man was sentenced to pay a $2.8 million penalty and $414,940 worth of back taxes. He was also sentenced to six months of probation and three months of home confinement during part of the probationary period. Charges related to other people's involvement in the tax evasion scheme are still pending.

A person who is charged with tax evasion often faces serious consequences, including the potential to receive prison time. Massachusetts tax attorneys may be able to assist clients in avoiding prison by pursuing alternatives such as house arrest.

Source: U.S. News, "Man sentenced for hiding millions in Swiss bank account," Andrew Rafferty, Mar. 5, 2013

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