Federal prosecutors and IRS-CID agents have, for decades, seized citizens' bank accounts when there has been a suspicion that the citizen has structured his bank deposits. The statute permitting these seizures and prosecutions is targeted at drug defendants who break up their deposits to keep them under $10,000. When an individual deposits more than $10,000 in a bank, the bank is required to prepare a Certified Transaction Record (CTR) and forward it to the Internal Revenue Service. Many individuals break up these transactions into several pieces to keep them under $10,000.
When it appears that an individual has divided his deposits in order to prevent the bank from preparing the CTR, the bank will frequently send a Suspicious Activity Report (SAR) to the Service so that they can begin an investigation.
Some people who are committing crimes structure these transactions to hide their ill-gotten profits. Other people, however, deposit legitimate cash funds but break them up because they don't want the IRS to have a record of it.
In a major development that favors the innocent, the Internal Revenue Service is now going to limit their prosecutions to people who are structuring deposits to prevent the Service from detecting their illegal activity that was used to generate the funds. In other words, these types of prosecutions should now be limited to targets who are laundering their illegal profits.
Mike and I have represented scores of people who have been caught up in these cases. We welcome the government's move to limit these investigations to serious criminal activity.