Former IRS Examiner Charged With Leaking Whistleblower’s Name To Big Bank Target
A former Internal Revenue Service examiner was arrested today at his home in Edgewater, N.J. on charges that he illegally leaked the name of a confidential tax whistleblower to an executive of the same bank that was the whistleblower’s target—a bank that allegedly had $1 billion in unreported U.S. income. According to a four count criminal complaint filed in the Southern District of New York yesterday and unsealed today, Dennis Lerner, 59, also violated federal conflict of interest laws by seeking a job with that bank while he was examining it, and then improperly seeking to influence his former colleagues at the IRS in their dealings with the bank.
While the bank isn’t named, it appears from dates in the indictment and Lerner’s employment history on LinkedIn, that the bank in question is Commerzbank AG, Germany’s second largest bank. Holly Esteves, the corporate communications director of Commerzbank in New York, said the bank would have “no comment at this point” on the case or on Lerner’s employment status. In June, in a separate case, Commerzbank entered into an agreement with the New York Fed to fix what the government said were deficiencies in its anti-money laundering program.