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LERNER CASE SHOWS THAT TIG WILL ACT TO PROTECT WHISTLEBLOWER IDENTITIES

11 / 11 / 2012

IN RE DENNIS LERNER


The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration is working with the U.S. Attorney's Office in New York as the United States has brought forth criminal charges and claims against a former IRS employee, Dennis Lerner, alleging that he improperly revealed the identity of a whistleblower who gave the IRS information that triggered an audit at Commerzbank AG.  What is significant is that Mr. Lerner is said to have become tax director at the bank during the time he represented the IRS in a settlement of the IRS audit favorable to the bank.  Lerner is alleged to have applied for the position at the bank, while in discussions with the bank as to the IRS audit and a possible settlement.  The complaint further reveals that the bank was willing to settle the IRS audit for significantly more than the $210 million that was wired to the IRS, after the whistleblower had revealed some $1 billion of untaxed income related to unspecified transactions.  Source:  Tax Notes Today, 2012 TNT 190-5 (September 28, 2012).