FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 12, 2015
Finally! Bankers Barred From Industry for Helping Tax Evasion
Fed Bans Five at Credit Suisse from Working in Banking
Washington, DC – The FACT (Financial Accountability and Corporate Transparency) Coalition today praised the announcement from the Federal Reserve that five bankers at Credit Suisse have been barred from working in the banking industry for their part in helping U.S. citizens evade income taxes.
According to a statement from the Federal Reserve, all of the bankers had been previously indicted for conspiracy to defraud the U.S government by assisting U.S. citizens’ evasion of federal income taxes through the creation and maintenance of bank accounts that weren’t declared to U.S. tax authorities.
The five indicted bankers are Markus Walder, Marco Parenti Adami, Susanne Ruegg Meier, Michele Bergantino, and Roger Schaerer. Walder was the head of Credit Suisse’s North American Offshore Banking business and was responsible for the bank’s undeclared U.S. cross-border banking business. At least three other Credit Suisse bankers have also been indicted.
The bans are indefinite, unless the indictments are dismissed.
“At long last, bankers are finally being held responsible for their actions in helping their clients evade income taxes and avoid paying their fair share,” said FACT Executive Director Rebecca Wilkins. “Hopefully this sends a message to bankers everywhere that there are consequences to their actions.”
“While we applaud the Fed for taking this step,” continued Wilkins, “we hope that these actions are just the beginning of more bans by the Fed and more indictments by the Justice Department. For too long, banks have gotten what amounts to a slap on the wrist for their actions. If bankers start going to prison, we may finally see some change.”
“These bans demonstrate the seriousness of the Credit Suisse bankers’ activities. We hope that the Department of Labor heard this message from the Fed as it considers whether Credit Suisse should continue to enjoy a privileged status under U.S. law to engage in high risk trading with people’s pension funds under the QPAM program,” said Heather Lowe, Legal Counsel & Director of Government Affairs at Global Financial Integrity. “Their felony conviction bars them from this privilege unless the Department of Labor waives it, and Credit Suisse should have to earn back its credibility and the trust of the U.S. Government.”
Founded in 2011, the Financial Accountability and Corporate Transparency (FACT) Coalition unites civil society representatives from small business, labor, government watchdog, faith-based, human rights, anti-corruption, public-interest, and international development organizations. We seek an honest and fair corporate tax code, greater transparency in corporate ownership and operations, and commonsense policies to combat the facilitation of money laundering and other criminal activity by the financial system.