Can Antigua Survive US Attacks On Online Gambling and Offshore Finance

24 May 2007

Ronald Maginley, columnist for the Antigua Sun, and spokesman for Antigua Offshore Gaming Association talked about Antigua, Barbuda and the WTO in his column today (the first of two installments) detailing the current battle being fought by Antigua against the US.

Most of the information is common knowledge, having been headlined throughout Antigua’s long 4 year battle against the US. Other information is not.

“In what is a continuation of measures that led to a financial advisory against Antigua & Barbuda in 1999, a new bill entitled “Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act” (S.681), has been tabled in the US Senate….”

“With measures that would seek to force tax havens to make full disclosure of US citizens accounts (including trust accounts); and with penalties that could make Antiguan citizens subject to charge in the US for aiding and abetting…”

“…our government’s rush to impose an IMF taxation programme, and in particular the Personal Income Tax (PIT), and then to criminalise its evasion, has opened a new and welcomed door for the IRS.”

“In the past, requests for information related to allegations of tax evasion by US citizens for accounts held in our offshore banks, could be refused by Antigua & Barbuda… because we had no income tax.”

“… With the imposition of the PIT however, personal income tax evasion is now a criminal offence and according to the requirements of the MLAT, Antigua & Barbuda is now required to help the US in enquiries of this nature.”

In part two of this article, Mr. Maginley will cover why he believes the US took its decision to withdraw from the WTO, discuss the attack on online gaming and the co-ordinated effort against the entire offshore financial sector.