Swiss whistleblower Rudolf Elmer plans to hand over offshore banking secrets of the rich and famous

Discussion in 'Wikileaks' started by haklaf, Jan 15, 2011.

  1. haklaf Member

    Swiss whistleblower Rudolf Elmer plans to hand over offshore banking secrets of the rich and famous to WikiLeaks

    He will disclose the details of 'massive potential tax evasion' before he flies home to stand trial over his actions
    • Rudolf-Elmer-in-Mauritius-007.jpg
      Rudolf Elmer in Mauritius: “Well-known pillars of society will hold investment portfolios and may include houses, trading companies, artwork, yachts, jewellery, horses, and so on.” Photograph: Rene Soobaroyen for the Guardian

      The offshore bank account details of 2,000 "high net worth individuals" and corporations – detailing massive potential tax evasion – will be handed over to the WikiLeaks organisation in London tomorrow by the most important and boldest whistleblower in Swiss banking history, Rudolf Elmer, two days before he goes on trial in his native Switzerland.
      British and American individuals and companies are among the offshore clients whose details will be contained on CDs presented to WikiLeaks at the Frontline Club in London. Those involved include, Elmer tells the Observer, "approximately 40 politicians".
      Elmer, who after his press conference will return to Switzerland from exile in Mauritius to face trial, is a former chief operating officer in the Cayman Islands and employee of the powerful Julius Baer bank, which accuses him of stealing the information.
      He is also – at a time when the activities of banks are a matter of public concern – one of a small band of employees and executives seeking to blow the whistle on what they see as unprofessional, immoral and even potentially criminal activity by powerful international financial institutions.
      Along with the City of London and Wall Street, Switzerland is a fortress of banking and financial services, but famously secretive and expert in the concealment of wealth from all over the world for tax evasion and other extra-legal purposes.
      Elmer says he is releasing the information "in order to educate society". The list includes "high net worth individuals", multinational conglomerates and financial institutions – hedge funds". They are said to be "using secrecy as a screen to hide behind in order to avoid paying tax". They come from the US, Britain, Germany, Austria and Asia – "from all over".
      Clients include "business people, politicians, people who have made their living in the arts and multinational conglomerates – from both sides of the Atlantic". Elmer says: "Well-known pillars of society will hold investment portfolios and may include houses, trading companies, artwork, yachts, jewellery, horses, and so on."
      "What I am objecting to is not one particular bank, but a system of structures," he told the Observer. "I have worked for major banks other than Julius Baer, and the one thing on which I am absolutely clear is that the banks know, and the big boys know, that money is being secreted away for tax-evasion purposes, and other things such as money-laundering – although these cases involve tax evasion."
      Elmer was held in custody for 30 days in 2005, and is charged with breaking Swiss bank secrecy laws, forging documents and sending threatening messages to two officials at Julius Baer.
      Elmer says: "I agree with privacy in banking for the person in the street, and legitimate activity, but in these instances privacy is being abused so that big people can get big banking organisations to service them. The normal, hard-working taxpayer is being abused also.
      "Once you become part of senior management," he says, "and gain international experience, as I did, then you are part of the inner circle – and things become much clearer. You are part of the plot. You know what the real products and service are, and why they are so expensive. It should be no surprise that the main product is secrecy … Crimes are committed and lies spread in order to protect this secrecy."
      The names on the CDs will not be made public, just as a much shorter list of 15 clients that Elmer handed to WikiLeaks in 2008 has remained hitherto undisclosed by the organisation headed by Julian Assange, currently on bail over alleged sex offences in Sweden, and under investigation in the US for the dissemination of thousands of state department documents.
      Elmer has been hounded by the Swiss authorities and media since electing to become a whistleblower, and his health and career have suffered.
      "My understanding is that my client's attempts to get the banks to act over various complaints he made came to nothing internally," says Elmer's lawyer, Jack Blum, one of America's leading experts in tracking offshore money. "Neither would the Swiss courts act on his complaints. That's why he went to WikiLeaks."
      That first crop of documents was scrutinised by the Guardian newspaper in 2009, which found "details of numerous trusts in which wealthy people have placed capital. This allows them lawfully to avoid paying tax on profits, because legally it belongs to the trust … The trust itself pays no tax, as a Cayman resident", although "the trustees can distribute money to the trust's beneficiaries".
      Now, Blum says, "Elmer is being tried for violating Swiss banking secrecy law even though the data is from the Cayman Islands. This is bold extraterritorial nonsense. Swiss secrecy law should apply to Swiss banks in Switzerland, not a Swiss subsidiary in the Cayman Islands."
      Julius Baer has denied all wrongdoing, and rejects Elmer's allegations. It has said that Elmer "altered" documents in order to "create a distorted fact pattern".
      The bank issued a statement on Friday saying: "The aim of [Elmer's] activities was, and is, to discredit Julius Baer as well as clients in the eyes of the public. With this goal in mind, Mr Elmer spread baseless accusations and passed on unlawfully acquired, respectively retained, documents to the media, and later also to WikiLeaks. To back up his campaign, he also used falsified documents."
      The bank also accuses Elmer of threatening colleagues.
    • Like Like x 4
  2. Anonymous Member

    This is the kind of leak i have waiting for.
    A bonus would be any sci banking dox.
  3. Anonymous Member

    Throw the book at wealthy tax evaders. This includes leaders of Scientology in particular.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. parvent Member

    This is a very interesting site brought to us by Patrick Byrne, CEO and Chairman of His dad is buds with Warren Buffett.

    There is so much financial crime in the world, it could be blamed for our recent world meltdown.
    • Like Like x 1
  5. Anonymous Member

    I for one aplaud this man's huge brass balls.
  6. Sponge Member

    So will this be like one big game of Blind Items?

  7. Wis1 Member

    I´ve red it right now in newspaper
    is fantastic
  8. timthephoto Member

  9. Anonymous Member

    Any likelyhood of Miscavige holding church funds in a Swiss bank account under his name?
  10. Sponge Member

    Since the names have been redacted then it will be hard to know. You'd have to look for key things in the financial data, in his case, heavy trading in buttplugs and shoe risers.
  11. The Wrong Guy Member

  12. guille Member

    I think more people like this guy are needed in the world.
    the 3 richest people in our planet have more money than the 81st poorest countries.
    How can we have reached this level? I mean, this can't continue like this.

    But there is something that I consider it's worse: even having those impossible amounts of money, those bastards are still trying not to pay taxes. Greedy ones the riches, aren't they?
  13. Kilia Member

    • Like Like x 1
  14. guille Member

  15. Rockyj Member

    He reminds of former health insurance industry's whistle blower Wendell Potter.
  16. guille Member

    It's something similar, I agree Rockyj
  17. Xoanon Member

    This man deserves the Nobel Peace Prize.
  18. The Wrong Guy Member

    Swiss ex-banker charged with giving data to WikiLeaks | Reuters

    A Swiss prosecutor brought charges against former Julius Baer private banker Rudolf Elmer on Wednesday for allegedly handing over confidential data to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and attempting to pass on files to German officials.

    The former head of Baer's Cayman Islands office has been under investigation by Zurich prosecutors since 2011, when he was arrested for giving Assange what - according to Elmer - were two discs containing confidential information on about 2,000 offshore banking clients.

    "The Zurich prosecutor for economic crime brought charges against Rudolf Elmer on July 9, 2014, for breaching banking secrecy and for forgery," the prosecutor said in a statement.

    The charges refer to data passed to Assange during a news conference in London and to alleged attempts by Elmer to pass on confidential client data to German officials in 2009 and 2010.

    In the past, some German states have bought data leaked from Swiss banks in order to get at names of their citizens who evade taxes, but it is not clear if Elmer's case has any connection to this.

    Elmer, who in past has said he wants to draw attention to financial abuses, could not be immediately reached for comment by Reuters on Wednesday. The Zurich prosecutor said Elmer denies having acted criminally.

    Continued at

    Also:"julius baer" trust&sort=0
    • Like Like x 3
  19. amaX Member

    everybody wants to know these illegal secrets, but not enough people want to try to protect these whistleblowers.
    • Like Like x 1

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