Ex-UBS banker pleads guilty to conspiracy in US tax evasion case; probation likely sentence

A former executive at Swiss bank UBS AG has pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge as part of a long-running U.S. investigation into tax evasion using secret accounts.

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Hansruedi Schumacher entered the plea Thursday before a Florida federal judge. Schumacher is cooperating in the investigation and in return, prosecutors will recommend a sentence of five years' probation and a $150,000 fine.

Schumacher admitted in court papers that while at UBS and a second Swiss bank from 1995 to 2009 he helped wealthy U.S. citizens escape the Internal Revenue Service using secret offshore accounts.

Several other bankers and dozens of customers have been prosecuted. UBS itself paid a $780 million fine to the U.S. in 2009 and agreed to disclose names of thousands of its American customers.