Beanie babies creator to pay $53m to settle US tax evasion charges

City A.M. Reporter
THE billionaire creator of Beanie Babies, Ty Warner, was charged yesterday with tax evasion and agreed to plead guilty and pay a penalty of almost $53.6m (£32.9m), according to prosecutors and his attorney.

Warner, 69, ranked as the 209th richest American by Forbes, “went to great lengths” to hide from his accountants and the Internal Revenue Service more than $3.1m in foreign income generated in a secret Swiss bank account, according to the US attorney’s office in Chicago.

Warner has agreed to pay a civil penalty of $53,552,248 for failure to file a Foreign Bank Account Report, according to a statement from Warner’s attorney Gregory Scandaglia. “Mr. Warner accepts full responsibility for his actions with this plea agreement,” Scandaglia said. The federal charge alleges that in 2002, Warner earned more than $3.1m through investments held in his UBS account, but did not tell his accountants and failed to report it on his 2002 tax form.

He failed to pay $885,300 in taxes owed for 2002, according to federal officials.