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Accounting News Roundup: Schapiro Doesn’t Feel IFRS Heat; Petters Clawback May Have Torpedoed EB Wipfli; Oscar’s Value (or Lack Thereof) | 02.27.12

Legal immigrants face deportation for filing false tax return [LAT]
Akio and Fukado Kawashima came to Southern California in 1984 as lawful Japanese immigrants determined to succeed in business. They operated popular sushi restaurants in Thousand Oaks and Tarzana and recently opened a new eatery in Encino. But after they underreported their business income in 1991, they paid a hefty price. The Internal Revenue Service hit them with $245,000 in taxes and penalties. The couple pleaded guilty and paid in full. A decade later, the Immigration and Naturalization Service decided to deport them. Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court delivered the final blow, ruling 6 to 3 that Immigration and Customs Enforcement — as the INS is now known — was within its authority to declare such a tax crime an "aggravated felony," subjecting an immigrant to automatic deportation. Once limited to murderers and drug kingpins, this deportation trigger has steadily expanded over the years.

Berkshire Tax Return Could be One for the Record Books [AT]
Berkshire Hathaway chairman Warren Buffett hinted in his annual letter to shareholders that the holding company’s nearly 18,000-page tax return may merit the attention of the Guinness Book of World Records. Referring to the people who work with the operating managers, he noted, “Equally important, however, are the 23 men and women who work with me at our corporate office (all on one floor, which is the way we intend to keep it!). This group efficiently deals with a multitude of SEC and other regulatory requirements and files a 17,839-page Federal income tax return—hello, Guinness!—as well as state and foreign returns.”
SEC chief resists pressure on global accounting [Reuters]

"I don't feel any pressure at all to go along with anybody," said Mary Schapiro, the chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, on the sidelines of the Practising Law Institute's annual SEC Speaks conference. "I feel pressure to do the right thing for U.S. markets and U.S. investors."
Source: Petters clawback suit sank EB Wipfli mega-merger [MSPJ]
EB Wipfli seemed like a done deal in January, when Fargo, N.D.-based Eide Bailly and Milwaukee-based Wipfli announced they would merge to create a Minneapolis-based accounting firm that would be among the largest in the nation. All the deal needed was regulatory approval, officials from both firms said. Now, the deal is dead, and neither firm will say what happened since their announcement last month. But a source close to the negotiations said Wipfli was spooked by a $25-million clawback suit filed against Eide Bailly by the attorney tasked with recovering funds lost to disgraced Minnetonka businessman Tom Petters' $3.65 billion Ponzi scheme. That news came out three days after the merger announcement.
KPMG short changes emerging talent [AccMan]
Dennis Howlett expounds on the UK firm's axing of bonuses.
Has Mark Wahlberg spoiled the Oscars? Actor names several winners after revealing he has 'inside information' [Daily Mail]
Turns out it's not the greatest inside information.
The devil's in the details (and the politics) [The Economist]
Mr Obama’s proposal is better than what America already has, but not by much. His well-intentioned goal of broadening the tax base is betrayed by the preferences he insists on maintaining for manufacturing and “green” energy whose economic merits have been questioned, even by former members of his own administration. By maintaining many of the current tax breaks but apportioning them more variably, the tax code would become more complex rather than less so.
Taxing the Oscars [YT via TaxProf]

Posted in ANR