Investing in a Tax Shelter

San Jose Mercury: Tech Execs Sue Over Tax Shelter. Five Silicon Valley executives — including four with ties to Cisco Systems — are suing Ernst & Young, claiming the Big 4 accounting firm peddled them a tax shelter that left them owing millions of dollars in taxes, penalties and damages. The five men invested more than $50 million total, a sum that the Internal Revenue Service estimates would generate $150 million in tax losses.

Invest in a company I get. Invest in real estate I get. But, invest in a tax shelter? Huh? I’m not sure invest is the right word to use. At least, unless people are investing at the craps table in Vegas as well. Robert L. Puette “invested” $6,666,667 in the tax shelter. Couldn’t find any contracts involving the other “investors” though.