It's getting so you can't keep track of the Igor Olenicoff lawsuit related to his investments with UBS AG bank without a scorecard.
In the latest twist, the billionaire who lives in Laguna Beach and oversees Olen Properties real estate in Newport Beach is being sued by the bank employee who helped him dodge taxes, went to prison and in September was awarded $104 million from the IRS for whistleblowing on clients like Olenicoff.
This will make more sense if we start from the beginning.
From 1998 through 2004, Olenicoff hid from the IRS accounts in the Bahamas, England, Liechtenstein and Switzerland--he claims under the advice of UBS AG bank of Zurich, Switzerland.
In 2007, Olenicoff pleaded guilty to hiding about $200 million of his fortune in offshore accounts and of filing a false 2002 tax return. U.S. District Court Judge Cormac Carney in Santa Ana sentenced Olenicoff to two years probation and 120 hours of community service, and the billionaire was forced to pony up $52 million in back taxes, interest and penalties.
In February 2009, UBS AG agreed to pay the U.S. $780 million to resolve a tax fraud case the government built with the help of Bradley Birkenfeld, the former banker who spent 2 1/2 years in prison for his role in the scheme.
Finding the Swiss bank's penalty unfair relative to it wealth versus his own, Olenicoff sued on grounds UBS AG bankers like Birkenfield gave him bad advice about sheltering his money. Judge Andrew J. Guilford in Santa Ana tossed the suit in April, writing "two wrongs don't make a right."
Now, Birkenfield is suing Olenicoff in the Santa Ana federal court for malicious prosecution, and if that has a familiar ring to it that could be because you heard UBS filed a similar complaint against Olenicoff in the same court last August.
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My head hurts.
Tom Newmeyer, the lawyer who represented Olenicoff in the suits against UBS and Birkenfeld, could not be reached for comment on the latest case, Birkenfeld v. Olenicoff.
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