NEW YORK (CNN/Money) -
The Internal Revenue Service identified dozens of people who it said took advantage of tax shelters and may have broken the law, including William E. Simon Jr. who is the Republican candidate for governor of California, a newspaper reported Friday.
The IRS filings, which were made as part of a court case with KPMG, also listed the late race car driver Dale Earnhardt, Global Crossing Chairman Gary Winnick, the U.S. ambassador to Barbados, Earl "Phil" Phillips Jr., Broadcom Corp. Chief Executive Henry Nicholas III, and New Line Cinema Chairman Robert K. Shaye, among others, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The IRS filed claims against KPMG and BDO Seidman alleging that the companies helped hundreds set up improper tax shelters in an effort to avoid paying billions in taxes to the U.S. government, the report said.
The lawsuit is an effort by the IRS to force the companies to make the names of clients and shelters public, which KPMG says should be protected under a client confidentiality agreement, according to the paper.
The suit is the most recent step in a government fight against tax shelters that began during the Clinton administration. The IRS, Treasury Dept. and congressional overseers have become increasingly frustrated with the lengths people, with the help of their accountants and lawyers, will go to avoid paying taxes in the U.S. -- and on Thursday some House Republicans proposed a bill to give the IRS more power in the fight, the report said.