Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
The witch hunt continues - and broadens #145144
08/30/02 03:12 PM
08/30/02 03:12 PM
Joined: Sep 2000
Posts: 713
Fremont, CA, USA
susangg Offline OP
susangg  Offline OP
Another warning for US citizens who live/work/bank abroad: The witch hunt has (as I predicted) broadened.

What are you reading?
Are you sick?
Have you bought a gun?
What magazines do you subscribe to?
What's your email address?
Who have you been emailing lately?
Where have you been?

Think all that is none of Uncle Sam's business? Think again....

IRS seeks records of credit-card sales
More than 40 firms asked to help ID offshore bank users
Chronicle Staff and News Services
Friday, August 30, 2002
©2002 San Francisco Chronicle.


The Internal Revenue Service went to court Thursday in San Francisco and six other cities to force more than 40 companies, including Gap Inc., EBay Inc. and Yahoo Inc., to surrender information on customers the tax collector suspects are hiding income in offshore bank accounts.

The IRS filed petitions in the seven U.S. District Courts seeking transaction records from airlines, hotels, rental car companies, retailers, Internet services and shippers. The companies aren't accused of any wrongdoing,

the IRS said, though the information may later be used in criminal investigations against their customers.

As many as 2 million Americans may hold debit or credit cards issued by banks in offshore tax havens. While it is legal to have an offshore bank credit card, the IRS believes the cards are frequently used to hide income and evade U.S. taxes.

Only 117,000 individual taxpayers in 1999 reported offshore bank accounts on their income tax returns; accounts above a $10,000 threshold are supposed to be reported.

Thursday's action marks the first attempt by the IRS to find out who is purchasing goods or services with credit cards linked to offshore accounts.

Previously, courts have authorized the IRS to serve so-called "John Doe" summonses on American Express, MasterCard and Visa International -- the latter in a March 24 petition filed in San Francisco -- seeking records on transactions using cards issued by banks in tax-haven countries.

But the IRS, in a statement, said that while these initial steps have produced significant information, it needs data from merchants where the offshore credit card users make purchases to more precisely identify those people.

"By requesting these John Doe summonses, the IRS is not saying that these companies have done anything improper," the IRS said. "As these companies conduct normal business with customers, they are unaware whether someone even has an offshore credit card."

IRS Commissioner Charles Rossotti said their goal was "simple and straightforward -- identify the people who may be using these offshore cards to evade paying their taxes."

The IRS began the investigation in October 2000, and it says it has developed hundreds of cases for civil audits or potential criminal investigation.

The Treasury loses between $20 billion and $40 billion in tax revenue each year because of offshore accounts, according to the General Accounting Office, the congressional auditing agency.

The investigation was prompted by transaction information the tax agency got from MasterCard in the last year. Rossotti told a Senate panel in April that the probe has yielded 1.7 million MasterCard records for more than 230, 000 accounts.

In some cases the IRS doesn't know the name or address of the cardholder; that is the information the agency is seeking from the merchants, said Dale Hart, deputy commissioner in the agency's small business and self-employed division.

Thursday's court petitions affect only MasterCard accounts, though the IRS may take similar steps with other companies based on its analysis of Visa and American Express purchases. The IRS said the court summonses were directed to "a limited number of businesses" that did business with customers using MasterCard accounts "issued by or through banks in Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas or the Cayman Islands."

The IRS said it chose the merchants named in Thursday's petitions because they are likely to collect the information it needs, such as names and addresses of cardholders.

According to Bloomberg News, IRS investigator Joseph West said in a court affidavit that the IRS has identified executives of publicly held companies, business owners, doctors, lawyers, investment professionals, tax shelter promoters and other wealthy individuals who use credit and debit cards issued through offshore banks.

©2002 San Francisco Chronicle. Page B - 2

Susan Guberman-Garcia, Attorney at Law. Phone: 510-792-2639
Fax/Voicemail:: 510-405-2016 Email: [email protected]
Re: The witch hunt continues - and broadens #145145
08/30/02 03:35 PM
08/30/02 03:35 PM
Joined: May 2000
Posts: 266
Naples, FL
M-A Gaffney Offline
M-A Gaffney  Offline
* Military Tribunals
* "Persons of Interest"
* Concentration Camps (oh, excuse me, detention centers)
The writing is on the wall. The USA is slamming doors and taking names.

Re: The witch hunt continues - and broadens #145146
08/30/02 07:15 PM
08/30/02 07:15 PM
Joined: May 2002
Posts: 137
Enigma Offline
Enigma  Offline
A friend of mine sent this link to me. He will be attending the rally in Washington, DC. After you view the site. I'd be interested in hearing your comments on the issues presented. It reads like Greek to me but I'm sure you can make better sense of it.


Portofino Resort- Now with a new BEACH BAR!!
Click for excellent scuba lessons with Elbert Greer!
Chaa Creek is an award-winning luxury Belize Resort, rated as one of the worlds best Eco Lodges. We are a pioneer in adventure travel to Belize since 1981!
Maruba Beach Klub and Spa is the premiere Secret Beach spa and restaurant located on the crystal blue waters of the Caribbean Sea at the center of Secret Beach, Belize
First Class Accommodations for the Budget Traveler
First Class Accommodations for the Budget Traveler

Things to do
Specials & Events
SPTB Calendar of Events

Daily News
Daily Weather

Classified Ads
San Pedro Sun
Ambergris Today
SP Town Council
Channel 7
Channel 5
Love FM
The Reporter
TV Newscasts
Radio Stations

Click for our
Search thousands of Belizean-only websites
To Get Your Questions Answered

Event Guides
Event Calendar
Specials & Events
Things to Do
Cayo Event Calendar

San Pedro Scoop!
Tia Chocolate
My Beautiful Belize
I-Travel Belize
Belize Adventure
Belize Hub
Romantic Travel
Belize Happy Adventures
Conch Creative
Caribbean Culture & Lifestyle
More Blogs...
Search thousands of Belizean-only websites
White Sands Dive Shop - 5 Star PADI Dive Facility - Daily diving, SCUBA instruction and Snorkeling
Caribbean Inspired All Natural Condiments & Spice Blends, Over 100 are Gluten Free!
We handle all aspects of the purchase of your Real Estate in Belize. From in depth property searches to your final closing.
Click for Ian Anderson's Caves Branch, Welcome to a World of Adventure
Lil Alphonse has snorkel equipment to fit anyone as well as Marine Park Tickets and flotation devices to assist those not as experienced.
Coastal Xpress offers a daily scheduled ferry run to most resorts, restaurants and private piers on the island of Anbergris Caye. We also offer  private and charter water taxi service.
1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 31
Cayo Espanto
Click for Cayo Espanto, and have your own private island
More Links
Click for exciting and adventurous tours of Belize with Katie Valk!
ShoutChat Box
Who's Online Now
0 registered members (), 115 guests, and 0 spiders.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Statistics
Most Online7,413
Nov 7th, 2021 HELP! Visitor Center Goods & Services San Pedro Town Message Board Lodging Diving Fishing Things to Do History Maps Phonebook Belize Business Directory Picture of the Day

The opinions and views expressed on this board are the subjective opinions of Ambergris Caye Message Board members
and not of the Ambergris Caye Message Board its affiliates, or its employees.

Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.1