200,000 secret offshore account details from Panama Papers

By Joe Mellor, Deputy Editor

 At 6pm at offshoreleaks.icij.org. 200,000 more account details from the Panama papers leak became available.

This data dump will show how some of the most affluent firms and high net worth individuals use offshore organisations to avoid paying tax.

The database belong to Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca, and the source of the leak is only know as “John Doe.”

“John Doe” has issued a statement citing “income equality” as his reason for sharing this secretive data.

He (although his gender has not been revealed) said: “Banks, financial regulators and tax authorities have failed. Decisions have been made that have spared the wealthy while focusing instead on reining in middle- and low-income citizens.”

The law firm says it has not been charged with criminal wrongdoing and believes it is the victim of a hack.

Mossack Fonseca has attempted to issue a “cease and desist” order to stop the database being released to the public, but they failed in their aims.

The ICIJ (International Consortium of Investigative Journalists) has progressed with the data dump regardless.

Already the leak has brought worldwide attention to the assets stashed away by celebrities, former and current leaders, politicians, sports stars and other prominent figures.

Among those whose affairs have come under scrutiny include UK Prime Minister David Cameron, Presidents Vladimir Putin of Russia, Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine and Mauricio Macri of Argentina, along with Argentinian football star Lionel Messi, Hong Kong film legend Jackie Chan and Spanish movie director Pedro Almodovar.

Iceland’s Prime Minister Sigmundur Gunnlaugsson resigned after the matter came to light.

The ICIJ said: “The database will not include records of bank accounts and financial transactions, emails and other correspondence, passports and telephone numbers. The selected and limited information is being published in the public interest.”

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