Talk:Bradley Birkenfeld

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Norwitch doesn't have a t. Norwich. I'd edit it directly, but I don't have a login.

Wikipedia Balance[edit]

Birkenfeld is a recognized whistleblower whose actions resulted in $780 million dollars in fines related to the tax evasion of about 14,000 Americans with Swiss bank accounts. The bank holding the accounts and paying the fine was UBS. Readers of this page on Birkenfeld himself will be interested to read the UBS AG bank page. It is instructive to see how the formatting and the substance of what is said are used to minimize what a reader of the UBS bank's page can learn about the Birkenfeld case, and indeed to minimize the chance a reader will discover this whistle blower at all. I invite others more skilled than I to create more balanced form and substance on that corporate page.
Jerry-va (talk) 15:45, 7 January 2010 (UTC)jerry-va

Can you be more specific about what you mean? Badagnani (talk) 04:12, 8 January 2010 (UTC)

Badagnani, Thank you for your many contributions to the Wikipedia, and for your interest. There are format and content elements of the USB AG page which minimize what a Wikipedia reader can learn of Brad Birkenfeld and his connection with the bank, and which minimize even the chance that a reader would discover his existence.
Search "Birkenfeld" and look at the format of the text where his name is mentioned. How is the bulleted list handled? Let us know what you see.
Turning from form to substance in this same block of text, is the fact that Birkenfeld committed fraud the most significant action he took in connection with Union Bank Switzerland? The text states that Birkenfeld is a guilty criminal now cooperating with the authorities. Most such criminals are caught and forced to cooperate. Should it be mentioned that the conviction is disputed [|Birkenfeld Attorneys Ask Attorney General Holder to Reopen Case]? Did the authorities catch Mr. Birkenfeld, or did Mr. Birkenfeld go to the authorities at the Dept. of Justice? And at the SEC also? And the IRS?
Finally, in the UBS page's introduction section, the $780M fine levied against UBS is mentioned. Do you think this fine should be linked to an order from a Swiss entity and the criminal investigation by the United States government not be mentioned? Should Birkenfeld's name not be mentioned here, since no US Federal investigation and no US fine would have occurred without him?
IMHO, these questions lie at the frontier of Wikipedia truthfulness. The individual statements are true, but the truth is lost. I invite others more skilled than I to bring a more balanced and truthful exposition to the UBS AG page in the Wikipedia, esp. as it reflects -- or fails to reflect -- the information here. Thank you everyone who is concerned with the quality of this community now and going forward.
--jerry, McLean,VA Jerry-va (talk) 20:19, 10 January 2010 (UTC)

DECEMBER 2011: THE CONTINUED FAILURE OF WIKIPEDIA Greetings, Wikipedia Community, it's jerry, McLean,VA again.
Here is an observation: Bradley Birkenfeld is now nowhere mentioned on the Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS) page. I had complained in Jan2010 above that his mention was phrased and formatted to hide him from readers' notice.

WORSE NOT BETTER: I challenged the community then to make the UBS page better with respect to everything that those who have read this page know. Instead, that other page has gotten worse. In terms of honesty, completeness, balance, courage and candor, it is worse. Please add a mention of Bradley Birkenfeld to the UBS page, and let us know what happens. Try it a few times, just to be sure, and let us know here on this page.

I assert that it is impossible for this community to place any information about Bradley Birkenfeld on the UBS page. This impossibility is a failure for the Wikipedia and the community which supports it.

NO STRUCTURAL SOLUTION: What mechanism does the Wikimedia Foundation propose to make it possible for the community to place a reference to Bradley Birkenfeld on the UBS page? You do not rely on corporate advertising, but seek the people's financial support. So? Support us in turn.

LARGER SIGNIFICANCE: What does it matter, you say, that some detail is missing from a banking page? No loss of freedom or fairness, the information is all here on this page? No. Muster better strength of character and greater power of intellect. Bradley Birkenfeld is just a symbol of much more, just a test case that makes our community's problem clearer -- volunteers and the open-access software we cherish vs corporate power.

WIKIPEDIA'S EDUCATIONAL ROLE: The financial boom-and-bust crises we have seen are very complex, very difficult to understand. There is much teaching to do. The Wikipedia supports that teaching and generates the wisdom that we as a society need in order to do better for all our members in all the times ahead. UBS paid a $780M fine because Birkenfeld blew the whistle on wealthy people who evaded paying taxes, and reduced revenues to run the society as a whole, for their benefit, our benefit, everyone's benefit. It should be pointed out on the UBS page that $37.5B in TARP money granted to US banks was immediately forwarded to overseas banks to cover bad American paper, and UBS received a $5B share of this money. ((We can leave it to readers to do the math: $780M in and $5,000M out. Another $4,220M in revenues collected from all Americans was given -- perhaps with justification -- to an institution that had defrauded the government from collecting its tax revenues.)) Let's just state that $5B in Federal Trouble Asset Relief Program (TARP) money was transferred through AIG to UBS. But, like Bradley Birkenfeld, TARP is nowhere mentioned on the page ($5B is just a rounding error?) nor is AIG. There is a large, structural problem for Wikipedia here: corporate power and determination vs our software and our community.

These are tough problems, and this institution is a leader. Our lot is with the many, not the few. What do you think can be done?
Jerry-va (talk) 00:26, 11 December 2011 (UTC)

Jerry, there used to be a section in the UBS wiki entry called "Significant Controversies" back around 2009, I think. However, that section seems to have been removed. For instance in the JP Morgan Chase entry there is a section called "Legal and regulatory proceedings" which lists the less than stellar happenings at that firm. There seems to be a concerted effort in the UBS wiki entry to suppress inglorious past history, though very recent and topical history is expounded. I wouldn't be surprised if in a few years even the tax scandal gets expurgated. Robert32439 (talk) 01:20, 24 May 2012 (UTC)

This Nageh guy keeps deleting UBS references. Does he work for UBS? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Robert32439 (talkcontribs) 18:56, 23 May 2012 (UTC)

In his statement to me Nageh threatened to redact the facts I contributed. Nageh said that Brad Birkenfeld was not a nice guy. A statement like that obviously shows Nageh is not impartial. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Robert32439 (talkcontribs) 00:23, 24 May 2012 (UTC)

What I miss[edit]

I miss in the article the special case, why Birkenfeld was sentenced. From

"The story of how he ended up headed for federal prison is still mired in sharply conflicting accounts. Justice officials claim that Birkenfeld was not completely forthcoming about his own dealings with particular clients, especially his biggest, the billionaire Olenicoff. Even as he was talking to the feds, they say, Birkenfeld was secretly advising the real estate mogul to move his money from UBS to Liechtenstein banks. (Olenicoff eventually settled for $53 million in tax and penalties.)"

I think this is imporant.

By the way, why are all references without links? At least the is available on the internet. --KurtR (talk) 04:39, 4 April 2010 (UTC)

I knew Brad Birkenfeld from Geneva. He has a tendency to fib. Sorry Brad.
Personally, I think it's a combination of both DOJ and Brad fibbing. i.e. the US government uses the Swiss banking system for money-laundering (on one level) but parts of the US government are concerned about tax-recovery (other parts are not, and enjoy the secrecy; lots of US intelligence accounts were secret Swiss accounts). I know this (personally) from talking to US investigators in Geneva (not investigating the UBS issue, but other issues) and their comment was that he shouldn'tve "outed" UBS, i.e. most US government investigators hate whistleblowers, feel they are whistleblowing to vent a grudge, and in Birkenfeld's case that was accurate - or at leat 50 per cent accurate. Birkenfeld whistleblew on UBS after suing them, and he sued them (and won) after they fired him for refusing to do something (I forget what), related to wrongful UBS practices, possibly involving tax-fraud. Where Birkenfeld "went wrong" was he continued to act as private-banker (on his own) to clients (which left UBS with him) and to hide their money, while at the same-time whistleblowing on UBS for doing the same, (i.e. having it both-ways, and "you can't do that" - especially when the US government spies on everything these days).
It is arguable that the US government "could have" let him go, because he "did" give them a big-win with the windfall reporting. But he kept evading taxes while reporting UBS. At least that's what I've read. Brad's side of the story is that they came-after him while letting all the other bankers go, which is unfair, but they were Swiss citizens, and their government defended them. Governments can do that, if they want to.
SIDEBAR1: After all, the Swiss guy who "outed" Credit Suisse (in 1993) for burning Jewish-bank information got US protection/asylum (from his own country's government) because "that's what the US government decided to do at the time" (protect a Credit Suisse employee for violating bank secrecy law and reporting his employer burning jewish-bank records. Switzerland wanted to jail the guy for that -the US protected him. Which was good.
SIDEBAR1: That wasn't fair either, from the Swiss point of view in 1993. But few things in life are fair.
It's not a matter of right and wrong. It's a matter of who has the power, of the politics, and unfortunately, Brad was "out of the money" - he launched a big deal, but he got screwed effectively, and frankly, he put himself in that position, sadly. Even the guy he was serving (Olenikoff) didn't do any jail time. That sucks (frankly) but then, he was the odd-man out, and that's how things work. He's done a good job all things considered, going on 60 minutes and making all this fuss, but he did, in fact, continue to tax-evade after reporting UBS for doing the same (on a larger scale, no argument there), so the DOJ had a point in prosecuting him (though he has a point, they didn't have to give him *so* much time - they could have given him six months (so he has another point, some of it was punitive. But was it punitive for: 1) tax-evading, (and effectively lying to the DOJ) after reporting to the UBS? Or 2) Was it punitive for reporting UBS in the first-place. Who knows. I'd say "both".
Brad will make money and be famous *after* jail, but right now, his situation 'blows'.
The US government is going to take the side of the big business, and UBS is a big financial donor to candidates, and that's why UBS was golfing with Obama while Birkenfeld went to jail. The Swiss citizens guilty of tax-fraud had protection of their government, while Birkenfeld did not.
Bottom line is if you are breaking the law, don't whistleblow.
The DOJ "expects" people who whistleblow to be committing criminals themselves, and the general attitude is that they are criminal-cooperating witnesses. This is their fundamental operating position, i.e. paranoid and judgmental. In Brad's case it was actually true, i.e. Brad was part of it, then wanted out (but kept his finger in the cake-bowl), and the DOJ can be very funny about such situations.
Brad was a whistleblower, but he drew attention to himself by whistleblowing while breaking the law. (talk) 19:14, 7 June 2012 (UTC)

Double play[edit]

This article series by the Global Post make it clear that Birkenfeld was ultimately arrested because of claimed double-play, as argued by judge Downing. This absolutely needs to be covered by the article! Nageh (talk) 11:19, 8 August 2010 (UTC)

In his statement to me Nageh threatened to redact the facts I contributed. Nageh said that Brad Birkenfeld was not a nice guy. A statement like that obviously shows Nageh is not impartial. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Robert32439 (talk • contribs) 00:23, 24 May 2012 (UTC) [edit] Robert32439 (talk) 00:35, 24 May 2012 (UTC)

Nageh repeatedly redacts facts that I have added to the article. Robert32439 (talk) 00:36, 24 May 2012 (UTC)

Your edits had zero relevance to the article but where all centered around the Obama administration. So much for being not impartial. Nageh (talk) 08:10, 24 May 2012 (UTC)

An encyclopedic article must contain all information for all users so that users and do their own research. Omission, and your repeated suppression of facts result in a distortion. Political contributions are an important source of understanding historical events.Robert32439 (talk)

I have made it clear that your edit is a synthesis of unrelated facts. Your edit strongly suggests that the U.S. Attorney General denied Birkenfeld's pleads simply because the Obama administration received funds from UBS. None of the sources you provide include such a statement. I am not redacting your political contributions, I am redacting your biased contributions. I welcome you again to clearly read and understand the editing policies and guidelines I have laid out on your discussion page, particularly our policies on neutral point of view and no original research. If you feel that I am censoring you you might want to ask for a third opinion at one of our notice boards or via Wikipedia:Third opinion. Nageh (talk) 13:21, 24 May 2012 (UTC)
Well, let's be realistic. Nowhere are you going to find that written, "Gee, we at the Obama administration received X donor funds from UBS and we are providing favor". But Obama was golfing with the US CEO of UBS the day of Birkenfeld's conviction[1]. I mean "please".
I think the truth is somewhere between the two. BBirkenfeld whistleblew while continuing to do business "on the side" (basically he got fired for refusing to do something unsavory, sued the company, then whistleblew, while continuing to tax-evade), so both Birkenfeld and the DOJ have arguments for complaint about the other. The main issue is that ONLY Birkenfeld went to jail, and no tax-evaders did, and the Bank? Well. They went golfing. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:37, 7 June 2012 (UTC)


An article on B.B. without a single reference to UBS' official report on the case is inconceivable. Please refer to (page 34 et passim) for a more balanced text. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:59, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

DEC 2011: Forgive the delay, I don't come here often. Thank you for calling our attention to a 76-page document published by the Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS). What information does this report contain that would increase the depth and accuracy of this Bradley Birkenfeld page of the Wikipedia? Remember that any reader is empowered to edit Wikipedia pages.

I am user Jerry-VA in McLean, VA and I sign my contributions. I notice that you are only "", an anonymous user coming to us from IP address,

  • address country: Switzerland
  • IP address state: Zurich
  • IP address city: Zürich
  • ISP of this IP [?]: Zurich Insurance Company

WIKIPEDIA mentions your organization re: market trading: In May 2007, Zurich Capital Markets, a subsidiary of Zurich Financial Services, paid $16.8 million to settle with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission for helping four hedge funds disguise their identities to avoid detection when making frequent trades in mutual fund shares.[11] An SEC director stated, “By knowingly financing their hedge funds clients' deceptive market timing, ZCM reaped substantial fees at the expense of long-term mutual-fund shareholders"[12]

WIKIPEDIA mentions your organization re: insurance sales: In 2006, Zurich Financial Services settled a $171 million case relating to bid rigging and price fixing.[7] "Businesses shopping for commercial insurance were deceived into believing they were getting the best deals available," said Abbott. "The whole anti-competitive scheme was an intentional smoke screen by several insurance players to artificially inflate premiums and pay improper commissions to those who brokered the deals." The states included in the settlement were Texas, California, Florida, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, Oregon, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Zurich is also required to pay about $122 million[8] in refunds to commercial policyholders in a New Jersey class action lawsuit[9] settlement.

As a courtesy from one Wikipedia user to another, I could see if that report you tout adds to what we know of the actions of Bradley Birkenfeld or the bank on which he blew the whistle. But before we expand the page we already have on Bradley Birkenfeld, you must edit the page on UBS so that the name of Bradley Birkenfeld is mentioned there. Mentioned at all. Even once. Period.

Thank you for your interest in the objectivity of the Wikipedia, the 5th most visited site on the Internet.

  • Products Life and non-life insurance, pensions, investments
  • Revenue US $67.85 billion (2010)
  • Profit US $3.434 billion (2010)
  • Total assets $375.7 billion (end 2010)

Wikipedia is supported by its users, and your financial contribution would be welcome, but only as a personal contribution representing yourself.
Jerry-va (talk) 23:42, 11 December 2011 (UTC)


This article completely fails to adhere to wikipedia's neutral point of view policy, instead it reads more as a pamphlet of why Birkenfeld should be accorded whistleblower status (but wasn't). To fix, it should at least:

  • mention UBS's official position, with proper sourcing
  • mention why Birkenfeld was actually convicted, the article conveniently skirts around that issue (see other comments), with proper sourcing
  • reference statements, such as "Over the next three years, Birkenfeld voluntarily undertook affirmative actions to initiate contact with and to provide sensitive, detailed information about the misconduct to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to the U.S. Senate.". Right now this reads more as opinion

Wppds (talk) 13:33, 18 March 2012 (UTC)

Bradley Birkenfeld cemented his whistleblower status in 2007 when he initiated contact with the SEC and U.S. Senate and confirmed with them what he told the Department of Justice and IRS earlier that year (in the Spring of 2007). The Senate Subcommittee on Permanent Investigations has his sworn testimony from early October, 2007 on file so this is not seriously in dispute. There are also two voluminous Senate reports, issued by the Senate Subcommittee (July, 2008 and March, 2009) which confirm this. Senator Carl Levin, Chairman of the Subcommittee, wrote a letter in support of Bradley Birkenfeld, acknowledging that it was Birkenfeld that prompted the Senate Subcommittee to open an investigation into UBS. The SEC Director of Enforcement, Robert Khuzami, wrote a similar letter in support of Bradley Birkenfeld, also crediting Birkenfeld for having prompted the SEC to open an investigation into UBS. Both of these letters are a matter of public record, having been filed in federal court in Fort Lauderdale. These investigations that were started by Bradley Birkenfeld forever changed Swiss banking secrecy and have now brought more than $4 Billion dollars back into the U.S. Treasury (according to IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman). Birkenfeld is, thus, indisputably the whistleblower that made it all possible.

The official UBS position is contained within the Deferred Prosecution Agreement which was signed by the attorneys for UBS and the Department of Justice and filed in federal court in Fort Lauderdale in 2008. UBS acknowledged in this agreement that it had been engaged in illegal activities from 2000 through 2007 (from one year before Birkenfeld started working at UBS to two years after Birkenfeld left UBS). This is exactly what Birkenfeld told the Department of Justice, IRS, SEC and Senate in 2007.Insider707 (talk) 23:44, 15 May 2012 (UTC)

Brad's Prosecutor going to work for "international financial institutions"[edit]

You can say what you want about the DOJ's position. But it *is* interesting that Kevin Downing is being hired to work for the big banks.

“The focus of the federal government on criminal tax enforcement is going to continue at an aggressive pace,” Patricia Sweeney, chairwoman of Miller & Chevalier’s tax department, said in the statement. Downing’s “understanding of both civil and criminal enforcement issues unique to international financial institutions will be of great benefit.” [2] — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:44, 7 June 2012 (UTC)
Isn't this normal? Isn't the revolving door normal? Who is the prosecutor. Is he famous like Vincent Bugliosi? Did he go to work for a firm that has UBS as a client?Shemp Howard, Jr. (talk) 19:27, 26 August 2013 (UTC)
It would be significant if you could link Downing to UBS before the case. Was he in private practice? Even then it probably would only be hearsay. I doubt he was as he would have had to recuse himself no doubt.Duchesstimesxtwo (talk) 16:09, 17 September 2013 (UTC)


A great deal of work went into rewriting this article to (1) give it balance, (2) ensure source-compliance, (3) ensure that noteworthy information is included, and (3) make it more readable. Unfortunately, User:Robert32439, a WP:SPA whose main interest seems to be in this article and the UBS article, has restored the article to its previous problematic state. I will revert him again and invite him to come here to justify his edits.--Bbb23 (talk) 23:45, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

Edit request on 16 July 2012[edit]

Please change all instances of "USB" to "UBS" to reflect the bank's official name.

Under the "Banking career" section, please change "solicit wealthy Americans to invest in the bank" to "solicity wealthy Americans to open accounts in the bank".

In that same section, please change "supplied by Birkenfeld" to "supplied by UBS".

In "USB's practices" [should be changed to "UBS's practices], please change "17,000 clients" to "19,000 clients".

In that same section, please change "5,000 Americans" to "4,500 Americans".

Under the "Whistleblowing and arrest" section, after the sentence "The DOJ responded that it was not part of the IRS's whisteleblower program and that it would not grant Birkenfeld immunity." please add the following: "The DOJ also refused to subpoena relevant parties and records to further pursue the matter."

In that same section, please change "Birkenfeld also wanted immunity from prosecution" to "Birkenfeld requested immunity from prosecution or a subpoena".

At the end of the paragraph, please add the following as the last sentence: "However, many important players have recognized Birkenfeld as an important, original source of the information, including Senator Levin, Chairman of the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Robert Khuzami, the Director of Enforcement of the SEC, and Senator Grassley."

Thank you very much and please let me know if you have any questions!

LindseyW827 (talk) 15:35, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

I changed the instances of USB to UBS. I made none of the other changes. The invest/open accounts is dubious. They're similar terms. To some extent when one deposits money in a bank, one invests in the bank. Based on the source, it looked more general to me than just opening accounts. They wanted people's money - it's not clear that they only way they got it was by accounts. Maybe you have a better source for it? The supplied issue stays the way it is. It's no doubt true that UBS issued the cards, but Birkenfeld gave the investors the cards (that's in the source). The two numbers changes are not source-compliant. The first subpoena issue is not in the source. The second subpoena issue is unnecessary detail. The last request you will need to provide a source for it because the source that is at the end of that paragraph doesn't support it. I do appreciate how clear your instructions were. :-) --Bbb23 (talk) 01:29, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Where do you find that info on Levin & Co., Lindsey? Government Web sites? I was going to add some information from the testimony on sexual harassment of women in the military after watching the hearings to relevant articles, but when I looked for the transcript, it seems you have to pay for the information. Is that how it is? Bbb23, do we have a Project or Roundrobin on how to access government information? You search on subjects, find what would be good info, and then it's on some Web site like democracy underground that doesn't properly source. It's frustrating. (I thought investigating old ballplayers and fighters was hard! This is testimony from last month I saw on cable TV!)Shemp Howard, Jr. (talk) 19:33, 26 August 2013 (UTC)

Edit request 25 July 2012[edit]

According to the Swiss newspaper NZZ Brad Birkenfeld will be early released on 1 August 2012: — Preceding unsigned comment added by Samuelkoch (talkcontribs) 09:21, 25 July 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for the pointer, but I feel uncomfortable changing the article because the Swiss source conflicts with what's on the U.S. prison website.--Bbb23 (talk) 00:28, 26 July 2012 (UTC)

Edit request on 11 September 2012[edit]

Change spelling from "Norwitch" to "Norwich" University (talk) 22:07, 11 September 2012 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done. Thanks.--Bbb23 (talk) 22:11, 11 September 2012 (UTC)

Change artice name to Bradley Birkenfeld from Brad Birkenfeld[edit]

Dear Everyone,

I propose to rename the article to Bradley Birkenfeld from Brad Birkenfeld or, in the alternative, have a redirect from Brad Birkenfeld to the Bradley Birkenfeld article. Three different authors[3][4][5] have used Bradley Birkenfeld as his name. Also the IRS Offshore Tax-Avoidance and IRS Compliance Efforts announcement lists his conviction under the name Bradley Birkenfeld. For the above reasons, I know my proposal should be adopted.

Please discuss. Geraldshields11 (talk) 13:58, 12 September 2012 (UTC)

He's called "Bradley" in the "60 Minutes" interview I just watched. That seems to be his name.Shemp Howard, Jr. (talk) 18:34, 22 August 2013 (UTC)
I think the article should be entitled "Bradley Birkenfeld". Looking at the history, I see that it was created by Jesslyn Raddack. Ms. Raddack is not only a whistleblower herself but works or worked for one of the organizations that petitioned Attorney General Eric Holder for an investigation. She either knows Birkenfeld or felt some comradery with him as a fellow whistleblower and called him "Brad" (a nickname) instead of Bradley, which is what articles, law suits, etc. refer to him as. It's one thing to use a nickname professional and be known by that name like say an actor and another to be dubbed a nickname by a Wikipedia contributor. Shemp Howard, Jr. (talk) 16:13, 29 August 2013 (UTC)
In the "memo" he wrote for World Policy Journal in Spring 2010 he uses the name "Bradley"Duchesstimesxtwo (talk) 16:12, 17 September 2013 (UTC)

This Article Needs Work[edit]

Steve Kroft says that Birkenfeld is one of the most important whistleblowers ever. Isn't he to the Swiss banking industry (and U.S. tax cheats) what Edward Snowden is to the NSA??Shemp Howard, Jr. (talk) 18:34, 22 August 2013 (UTC)

Please Put in Info on Your Change[edit]

Please put a precis of the info you changed or added in the Summary box at the bottom of the page. Thank you! Shemp Howard, Jr. (talk) 05:41, 26 August 2013 (UTC)

Union Charter Ltd.[edit]

Anyone hear of it? An outfit named Union Charter has a web site. It says on its Web site, "Union Charter is not an investment bank, merchant bank, savings and loan, commercial bank, venture capital fund, lending institution, hedge fund, mutual fund, or brokerage firm." What is it??? Those Swiss bankers! Shemp Howard, Jr. (talk) 20:34, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

Obama Played Golf with the UBS President????[edit]

I just saw the link in references when I saved my last post. I nearly choked on my coffee. Should I read it? LOL!Shemp Howard, Jr. (talk) 20:36, 29 August 2013 (UTC)

Too bad it's not a reputable source. I searched on Obama, golf and Wolf and find out not only is Robert Wolf Obama's golfing buddy (they went golfing this year too), he's on Obama's jobs council. I can't even write this without laughing. I have no idea where this should go. I'm not going to put it into the article. How about under "Absurdity" or "Theatre of the Absurd"??? I'm gonna have a couple of beers now and go back to writing about spies and murderers. There's something more honest about them compared to bankers and politicians.  ;-) Shemp Howard, Jr. (talk) 20:49, 29 August 2013 (UTC)
So Obama is a corrupt cul. George W. Bush still makes him look like Pere Noel in comparison.(Duchesstimesxtwo (talk) 16:14, 17 September 2013 (UTC)

Birkenfeld resigned TWICE from UBS[edit]

The text has Birkenfeld resigning twice from UBS. Quote: "He resigned from UBS in October 2005 and complained to UBS compliance about the bank's "unfair and deceptive business practices". According to Birkenfeld, when he received no response, three months later he wrote to Peter Kurer, then General Counsel for UBS, about the illegal practices.[15] He resigned from UBS in April 2006." Which one is it?Arnold Winkelried (talk) 19:10, 7 September 2013 (UTC)

Didn't he get a cash buyout or some kind of settlement from UBS as a whistleblower. This guy knows doesn't leave one teat unsuckled.Duchesstimesxtwo (talk) 16:16, 17 September 2013 (UTC)

Need more on Birkenfeld's role as whistleblower and its effect on Swiss banking and bank secrecy[edit]

Reading foreign coverage of Birkenfeled, you find out the Swiss refer to the UBS tax evasion scandal as "L'affaire Birkenfeld" and credit him with bringing down bank secrecy and causing a sea change in the industry. I only put a part of it in the beginning. I think we need an "Influence" section toward the end. The article I cited talked about European reaction. The newspaper mentioned BLICK says that because of Birkenfeld's example, Swiss bankers are more rebellious, more unwilling to engage in questionable activities.Shemp Howard, Jr. (talk) 22:06, 16 September 2013 (UTC)

He definitely led to a revolution in the Confoederatio Helvetica. You should check Swiss sources but they will be in French and German. Is that acceptable?Duchesstimesxtwo (talk) 16:18, 17 September 2013 (UTC)

Birkenfeld's Article Available Online and in PDF[edit]

Birkenfeld had some time on his hands at Minersville apparently and wrote an article called "Inside the Cartel" that was published in the Spring 2010 issue of World Policy Journal. The PDF is available here: . Also World Journal put it online under another title Bradley Birkenfeld: the Whistleblower In His Own Words. Click on through and there's the text. They seem to be identical. Cheers!Duchesstimesxtwo (talk) 16:22, 17 September 2013 (UTC)


  1. ^ s Obama Golfs with UBS CEO Days After Firm Avoids Criminal Prosecution, UBS Whistleblower Given 40-Month Jail Term
  2. ^
  3. ^ "U.S. IRS awards $104 million to UBS tax case whistleblower". Reuters. September 11th, 2012. Retrieved September 11th, 2012.  Check date values in: |access-date=, |date= (help)
  4. ^ Coder, Jeremiah (2012). "IRS PAYS BIRKENFELD $ 104 MILLION WHISTLEBLOWER AWARD. (Section 7623 -- Expenses of Detecting Frauds)". Tax Notes Today. 2012 TNT 177-1 (177).  Unknown parameter |month= ignored (|date= suggested) (help)
  5. ^ Sheppard, Lee A. (September 12, 2012). "NEWS ANALYSIS: SWISS BANKING DEROBED: INTERNATIONAL IMPLICATIONS OF BIRKENFELD". Tax Notes Today. 2012 TNT 177-2 (2012 TNT 177-2).  Unknown parameter |month= ignored (|date= suggested) (help)

Deferred Prosecution Agreement[edit]

Should that be explained. Or is there a link-through.Duchesstimesxtwo (talk) 16:25, 17 September 2013 (UTC)

The article reads 'In February 2009, as a result of the information he gave U.S. authorities, the DOJ announced it had reached a deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) with UBS that resulted in a $780 million fine and the release of previously privileged information on American tax evaders.[7][8] To settle the SEC’s complaint that it violated the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Investment Advisers Act of 1940, UBS agreed to disgorge $200 million in profits, bringing the total amount of the settlement to $980 million.' -- Reading sources the article claiming a 980 million total package of 780 million fine + 200 million disgorged profit seems to be wrong. Only one source quotes 980 figure. Actual details indicate that the bank paid a 580 million fine plus profit coughup worth 200 million for total of 780million. SEC article seems to confuse two cases. No other sources say 980 million.Tricolour1789 (talk) 12:40, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
Tricolor is right. I've changed the wording according (though I left the link in to the article with the erroneous info. Should I get rid of it? Probably.Shemp Howard, Jr. (talk) 20:06, 14 October 2013 (UTC)

Drink Driving Arrest[edit]

Why is the only thing under Personal Life Birkenfeld's drink drivings arrest? What happened at the trial. Should be eliminated unless there is a conviction and it effects his life such as being remanded to gaol.Cuddy Banks (talk) 19:20, 14 December 2013 (UTC)


This article is rather sloppy. I've been away from Wiki for awhile but things haven't changed. The intro is too involved and has too much information that should be in the body of the article and in fact doubles information in the article some of it contradictory. Intro should be about the subject, some particulars, what he did to make himself important and why he is important. The details are in the body of the article. Mackenzie0158 (talk) 05:02, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

Good work. You seem to have kept everything and made it flow more chronologically and logically but there are some redundancies towards the end.William (The Bill) Blackstone (talk) 16:57, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

Date Format[edit]

There seems to be different format for dates from paragraph to paragraph (DD/MM/YR) vs. (MM/DD/YR) and even within paragraphs. I nominate State Your Name for a cleanp!William (The Bill) Blackstone (talk) 16:57, 20 January 2014 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: moved. DrKiernan (talk) 19:04, 29 January 2014 (UTC)

Brad BirkenfeldBradley Birkenfeld – Articles refer to Birkenfeld as "Bradley Birkenfeld". Not one article I have read including the ones I have added and the ones already in the over 60 citations, calls Birkenfeld "Brad". From what I can garner from the Talk Page, the article was called "Brad Birkenfeld" as it was created by a person from the Government Accountability Project who knew him personally. She was using his nickname. This is hardly a valid reason for this page to be called Brad Birkenfeld, which is an informal name. 21:36, 18 January 2014 (UTC)William (The Bill) Blackstone (talk). 21:36, 18 January 2014 (UTC)

It should be Bradly. No article that I have read refers to him as Brad.Mackenzie0158 (talk) 04:57, 20 January 2014 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.