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April 2 (Bloomberg) -- A Florida accountant became the first U.S. taxpayer accused of hiding money in a UBS AG account after the Swiss bank provided U.S. authorities with information about some account holders.
The Justice Department accused Steven Michael Rubinstein, a chartered accountant in Boca Raton, Florida, of filing a false 2007 income tax return to hide dealings with UBS through a Swiss bank account he kept in the name of Hybridge International Ltd.
“Today is the first of the prosecutions” since UBS disclosed “the identities of taxpayers that were illegally using Swiss bank accounts to evade U.S. taxes,” R. Alexander Acosta, the U.S. attorney in Miami, said in a statement.
U.S. Sues 32 Individuals, Alleging $30 Million Tax Credit Scam Based on Sham Sales From Non-Existent Methane Production Facilities at Landfills
WASHINGTON, April 2 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The United States has sued four Certified Public Accounts (CPA), 27 tax preparers and one other individual, seeking to bar them from promoting an alleged tax scam involving bogus income tax credits claimed for sham sales of methane from landfills, the Justice Department announced today.
According to the civil injunction lawsuit, filed in Tampa with the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, George Calvert of Hernando Beach, Fla., and Gregory Guido of Lithia, Fla., concocted a scheme that involves creating bogus business records purportedly documenting sales of methane from landfills in Puerto Rico, Illinois, New York, Ohio and Connecticut. The suit alleges that there were no methane sales, but that the defendants helped their customers claim tax credits based on the purported sales. Federal law allows an income tax credit with respect to certain sales of fuel from non-conventional sources, including methane produced from landfills.
The government complaint alleges that Calvert and Guido promoted the scheme through tax preparers, who acted as sub-promoters. The tax preparers allegedly sold interests in the sham methane production facilities to thousands of customers in at least 14 states across the country and prepared income tax returns for their customers claiming more than $30 million in tax credits based on the sham methane sales.