Switzerland’s oldest bank closes after admitting it helped 100 Americans avoid paying $1.2billion in tax
- Bank founded in 1741 to shut after paying $57.8m fine
- Bank admitted knowing what it was doing was wrong
- First foreign bank to plead guilty to tax evasion in U.S.
- Other Swiss banking giants under investigation
The bank, established in 1741, confessed to allowing more than 100 American citizens hide $1.2bn from the Internal Revenue Service for nearly a decade.
America's recent crackdown on tax evaders and offshore accounts discouraged Swiss banks from taking on U.S. customers.
But Wegelin, based in the Swiss town of St Gallen did not follow suit.
US Attorney Preet Bharara told the BBC: 'The bank wilfully and aggressively jumped in to fill a void that was left when other Swiss banks abandoned the practice due to pressure from US law enforcement.