8 more UBS tax evasion suspects summoned


Businessmen and lawyers are among those suspected of evading taxes by concealing income.

Following the indictments filed against the former owners of the On Clinic, a chain of clinics for treatment of sexual dysfunction and others in the affair of the UBS bank accounts, more suspects have now been summoned for a hearing, including businessmen and lawyers.

The State Attorney's Office taxation and economics department recently notified suspects in seven different cases that indictments against them were being considered, and that if they wished, they would be summoned to a preliminary hearing on charges of concealing financial income from their investments in UBS.

Letters were sent to businessmen, lawyers, and employees suspected of concealing income varying between hundreds of thousands of shekels to NIS 5 million.

The suspects receiving letters included Yoel Grossberg, Michael Michaelovitch, David Peleg, Ezra Falk, Sorin Hershkovitz, Aharon Cohen, and Rosen Cohen.

The suspected offenses in the cases involve accounts in which money deposited in them was initially tax-exempt (such as inheritances and gifts). The suspicions concern concealment by the suspects of the accounts' existence and their income from interest, dividends, and securities.

The first indictments filed in the UBS affair were against former On Clinic owners Boris Weissman and Avissar Weissman, Meron Neeman, Moshe Rachamut, and Arik Israeli for fraud under the Income Tax Ordinance and money laundering. The Israel Tax Authority and the State Attorney's Office are still considering the cases of other suspects in the affair.

The suspects are being given the opportunity to exercise their legal right to a hearing by the State Attorney's Office before a decision is made whether to indict them.

The cases were investigated by the Tax Authority Assessors Investigative Unit for Haifa and the Northern District, and are being handled by Advocate Noga Blickstein Shchory from the State Attorney's Office taxation and economics department.

The UBS affair, which has involved many arrests and the investigation of dozens of Israelis suspected of tax evasion through secret accounts at the Swiss bank, was revealed in June 2014, when the covert investigation went public. The first suspect arrested was senior UBS investment consultant Roni Elias, who was arrested following a meeting with clients in the Tel Aviv Peer Hotel under the observation of the Tax Authority investigators. Elias recruited clients for the Swiss bank in Israel discretely and with no documentation. Searches of Elias's hotel room revealed lists of hundreds of Israelis holding unreported accounts in Switzerland that he was directly responsible for handling.

Published by Globes [online], Israel Business News - www.globes-online.com - on July 3, 2017

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