UBS agrees to pay $780m in fines

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The Independent Online

The Justice Department said on yesterday that Switzerland's largest bank has entered into what is known as a deferred prosecution agreement on charges of conspiring to defraud the United States by impeding the Internal Revenue Service.

In an unprecedented move, UBS, based on an order by the Swiss Financial Markets Supervisory Authority (FINMA), agreed to immediately provide the U.S. government with the identities of, and account information for, certain United States customers, the department said.

UBS has also agreed to expeditiously exit the business of providing banking services to United States clients with undeclared accounts, it said.

UBS agreed to pay a total of $780 million in fines, penalties, interest and restitution, the department said. The agreement was accepted by a federal judge in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

John A. DiCicco, acting assistant attorney general of the Justice Department's Tax Division, said in a statement, "The veil of secrecy has been pulled aside and we will continue to aggressively pursue those who shirk their federal tax obligations or assist others in doing so."