Switzerland's oldest bank, Wegelin to close over US tax evasion scandal

Switzerland's oldest bank, Wegelin to close over US tax evasion scandal

PanARMENIAN.Net - Switzerland's oldest bank is to close permanently after pleading guilty in a New York court to helping Americans evade their taxes, BBC News reported.

Wegelin, which was established in 1741, has also agreed to pay $57.8m (£36m; 44m euros) in fines to US authorities.

It said that once this was completed, it "will cease to operate as a bank".

The bank had admitted to allowing more than 100 American citizens to hide $1.2bn from the Internal Revenue Service for almost 10 years.

Wegelin, based in the small Swiss town of St Gallen, started in business 35 years before the US declaration of independence.

It becomes the first foreign bank to plead guilty to tax evasion charges in the US.

Other Swiss banks have in recent years moved to prevent US citizens from opening offshore accounts.

 Top stories
So far 18 people have also been confirmed dead in an avalanche that swept through the Mount Everest base camp.
Investigators say they found a militant ring in Sardinia, with a suicide attacker potentially planning to target the Holy See.
“Every day Americans need a champion, and I want to be that champion, so you can do more than just get by,” Clinton said.
Defense team say he took part in the bombing, but argue that his elder brother, Tamerlan, was the mastermind of the attack.
Partner news
Soghomon Tehlirian assassinated Talaat Pasha on March 15, 1921

Operation Nemesis was a covert operation by the Armenian Revolutionary Federation carried out from 1920 to 1922, during which a number of former Ottoman political and military figures were assassinated for their role in the Armenian Genocide.