The head of a yachting company became the second UBSclient in the U.S. to plead guilty to tax fraud charges in the midst of aninvestigation into the Swiss bank's tax shelters.
Robert Moran, 57, CEO of Moran Yacht and Ship, appearedTuesday before Judge James I. Cohn in Ft. Lauderdale and acceptedresponsibility for concealing more than $3 million in assets in a secret bankaccount at UBS in Switzerland, pleading guilty to charges of filing a falseincome tax return.
According to court records, on or about Oct. 14, 2008,Moran, a Ft. Lauderdale yacht broker, filed a 1040 for tax year 2007, butfailed to report that he had an interest in, or signature authority over, afinancial account at UBS in Switzerland. He also failed to report the income heearned on any UBS Swiss bank accounts.
Moran was the beneficial owner of a UBS account in thename of Winter Drive Investments SA, a nominee Panamanian corporation. From2001 through 2008, Moran communicated with bankers at UBS via e-mail, telephoneand in person about the purchase and sale of securities, and the conversion ofinvestments from U.S. dollars to euros.
Sentencing is scheduled for June 26, 2009. Moran faces amaximum sentence of three years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.
UBS entered into a deferred prosecution agreement inFebruary 2009, in which the bank admitted to helping U.S. taxpayers hideaccounts from the IRS (see UBS Agrees to Reveal U.S Tax Shelter Clients). Aspart of their agreement, UBS agreed to provide the U.S. government with theidentities of, and account information for, certain U.S. customers of UBS'scross-border business.
On April 2, 2009, another UBS client, Steven MichaelRubinstein, was charged with filing a false income tax return via a criminalcomplaint. Rubinstein, of Boca Raton, Fla., is alleged to have failed to reportincome and assets in a secret Swiss bank account.
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