Tags: ubs | whistleblower | birkenfeld | arrest | vindication

Whistleblower Jailed by DOJ: Reward From IRS Is 'Vindication'

("Full Measure")

By    |   Sunday, 08 Nov 2015 10:41 PM

Bradley Birkenfeld says he feels vindicated after the IRS gave him a $104 million reward after he served 2½ years in prison for information he gave as a whistleblower on Swiss bank UBS.

Birkenfeld became a whistleblower in 2007, sharing information about how money was being hidden in Swiss banks to avoid paying U.S. taxes.

In an interview broadcast Sunday on "Full Measure," http://fullmeasure.news/ Birkenfeld told host Sharyl Attkisson the U.S. Justice Department seemed unhappy with him for bringing the information forward.

It turns out UBS was a major donor to then-President George W. Bush and to his successor President Barack Obama.

Birkenfeld said the company exerts power in the United States not only by the people who had secret accounts, but by those it was able to influence.

In the end, the DOJ used the very evidence Birkenfeld provided to prosecute him instead of some of the people he was turning in.

A settlement was reached in which the company paid $780 million, a billion less than it made on the illegal accounts, Birkenfeld says. UBS also had to divulge the names of only 4,450 tax evaders out of a total 19,000.

And there was no explanation as to why the names that were divulged were chosen.

But since whistleblowers are given up to 30 percent of the money the IRS collects from tax evaders, he was able to leave prison with a percentage of the $5 billion in taxes it collected.

"I think I did it out of courage, and doing the right thing for my country," Birkenfeld said. "And I think people see that. And, certainly, I did go to prison for 2 1/2 years, but the vindication of getting the $104 million, really makes me smile. Because what it does is it sends a message to the DOJ: I beat the system, and I beat you. And now, the American people can decide who is right and who is wrong."

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Bradley Birkenfeld says he feels vindicated after the IRS gave him a $104 million reward after he served 2.5 years in prison for information he gave as a whistleblower on Swiss bank UBS.
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2015-41-08
Sunday, 08 Nov 2015 10:41 PM
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