Source: The Guardian Unlimited
Guardian analysis of leaked papers will show how influential people including heads of government have exploited tax havens
The hidden wealth of some of the world’s most prominent leaders, politicians and celebrities has been revealed by an unprecedented leak of millions of documents that show the myriad ways in which the rich can exploit secretive offshore tax regimes.
The Guardian, working with global partners, will set out details from the first tranche of what are being called “the Panama Papers”. Journalists from more than 80 countries have been reviewing 11.5m files leaked from the database of Mossack Fonseca, the world’s fourth biggest offshore law firm.
The records were obtained from an anonymous source by the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung and shared by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists with the Guardian and the BBC.
Though there is nothing unlawful about using offshore companies, the files raise fundamental questions about the ethics of such tax havens – and the revelations are likely to provoke urgent calls for reforms of a system that critics say is arcane and open to abuse.