For a firm dealing with the super-rich, super-elite, super-secret, Panamanian firm Mossack Fonseca has just become a euphemism for all of those things.
And for many of the wrong reasons.
The firm is very well known in a lot of people in those groups, but now thanks to a leak of massive volumes of documents leaked to journalists it is now the subject to massive scrutiny with names as big as Vladimir Putin’s being highlighted for the funnelling of funds across a multitude of jurisdictions, as well as other high profile political, social and sporting figures.
The law firm, set up in 1977, has global reach across a network of more than 40 offices, designed to help the setting up of Panamanian registered companies that will obscure the real ownership. Entities are registered in tax havens and countries across the world
What the Panama Papers Show
The Panama Papers are a trove comprising some 2.6 terabytes of data. Let’s take a look at some of the politicians and assorted crooks who might be testing the taxation waters (to put it mildly), which our friends at Vox have reported:
- Vladimir Putin’s inner circle appears to control about $2 billion worth of offshore assets.
- The Prime Minister of Iceland secretly owned the debt of failed Icelandic bankswhile he was involved in political negotiations over their fate.
- The family of Pakistan’s prime minister owns millions of dollars worth of real estatevia offshore accounts.
- Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko pledged to sell his Ukrainian business interests during his campaign, but appears instead to have transferred them to an offshore company he controls.
The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists has a full profile of the politicians and relatives named in the papers – some 11.5 million secret files.
Is your favorite politician there?