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Tax cheats pony up $5.5B in amnesty

9:12 PM, Apr. 26, 2013  |  Comments
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America's tax collector has recouped more than $5.5 billion under a series of programs that offered reduced penalties and no jail time to people who voluntarily disclosed assets they were hiding overseas, government investigators said Friday.

In all, more than 39,000 tax cheats have come clean under the programs.

But there's more.

Government investigators suspect that thousands of other taxpayers have quietly started reporting foreign accounts without paying any penalties or interest. The number of people reporting foreign accounts to the Internal Revenue Service nearly doubled from 2007 to 2010, to 516,000 accounts, a report by the Government Accountability Office said.

The sharp increase suggests that some people are simply starting to report their accounts without taking part in the disclosure programs, the report said.

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