The pretrial discovery phase of a divorce, bankruptcy or other legal matter is often the best chance one has to collect evidence of any assets hidden offshore.   The attached letter rogatory* submitted to the Swiss court, was included in one divorcing wife’s pretrial effort to gather such evidence.

At the time of pretrial discovery in her New York divorce, this wife used the letter rogatory to try to compel a Swiss bank to disclose info about her husband’s secret financial account.  In the Chapter 7 bankruptcy of Michael Mastro, discovery devices were likewise employed to collect evidence or leads about assets thought to be offshore.  One of these devices is the subpoena duces tecum reproduced below.

This subpoena reveals that the trustee for the Mastro bankruptcy estate sought among other things, copies of Mr. Mastro’s passport, airline tickets and hotel receipts.  As “Secreting Assets Without A Border Trace” indicated, investigators may search for offshore assets by “concentrat[ing] on foreign hotels, payment information, telephone records and on credit card expenses for details of physical movements and lifestyle.”

 (Click On The Subpoena To Read It)

*Letter Rogatory Has Been Sanitized / Changed For Privacy Reasons.

Copyright 2011 Fred L. Abrams