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(Bloomberg) -- Bradley Birkenfeld, the former UBS Group AG banker who won a $104 million whistle-blower award after serving time in U.S. prison for tax conspiracy, has been summoned to testify in a separate investigation of the Swiss bank in France.
Birkenfeld has asked permission from a Florida federal court to travel to Paris to testify before a French judge, Guillaume Daieff, on Feb. 27, according to a court filing. Daieff is leading investigative judges probing whether UBS, the largest Swiss bank, engaged in laundering the proceeds of tax fraud.
The Justice Department agreed to the request for Birkenfeld’s travel to Paris, according to the filing in U.S. district court in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where he pleaded guilty in 2008 and remains on probation.
U.S. District Judge William Zloch must agree to his travel. Last month, Zloch rejected Birkenfeld’s request to end his probation with less than a year left so he could move to Europe.
Birkenfeld attorney Gerald Greenberg didn’t immediately return a phone call and e-mail seeking comment. Justice Department spokeswoman Nicole Navas declined to comment, as did UBS spokesman Serge Steiner.
Zloch sentenced Birkenfeld to 40 months in prison after he pleaded guilty in 2008 to conspiracy. The U.S.-born banker told U.S. authorities how UBS helped thousands of American clients avoid taxes. In 2009, UBS paid $780 million to avoid prosecution, admitted it aided tax evasion and turned over data on thousands of Swiss accounts.
After Birkenfeld’s release in August 2012, he won the largest whistle-blower award in U.S. history. His probation will end Nov. 28, 2015, after he served 30 months in prison, a month of community confinement and three months in home confinement.
UBS had to pay a security deposit of 1.1 billion euros ($1.3 billion) in September to cover a potential French penalty. The bank appealed the bail amount and has said it would ask the European Court of Human Rights to overturn it.
The case is U.S. v. Birkenfeld, 08-cr-60099, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida (Fort Lauderdale).
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