A federal judge has declined Bradley Birkenfeld’s request for leniency. Birkenfeld must report to prison on Friday, January 8, as scheduled, to serve his 40-month prison term.

Birkenfeld pleaded guilty last year to helping many of his clients, including billionaire Igor Olenicoff, evade taxes. Olenicoff pleaded guilty in 2007 to filing a false tax return; he got two years probation and paid $52 million in back taxes, fines and penalties. Olenicoff is said to be worth a whopping $1.6 billion.

Birkenfeld claims that the IRS would have never gotten Birkenfeld – or any other UBS clients – without him. On Sunday, he appeared on CBS’ 60 Minutes, claiming, “I gave them the biggest tax fraud case in the world. I exposed 19,000 international criminals. And I’m going to jail for that?”

Well maybe he did a little more than that. Here’s a bit of his interview:

For his trouble, he’s looking for 30% of the take from the IRS. Who says that crime doesn’t pay?

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Kelly Erb is a tax attorney and tax writer.

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