Sunday’s report of the Panama Papers detailed a global, decades-long story of bribery, arms deals, tax evasion, and financial fraud that implicates over 100 politicians and public officials. Equally impressive, however, is project itself, which was kept secret for nearly two years despite the involvement of hundreds of reporters.
Here are some details about how the project came together.
It’s not easy to make tax fun, so – aside from taking an interactive look into a trove of 11.5 million documents that reveal how the rich and famous avoid paying it – the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) has created a choose your own adventure game. As revealed in the leaked files from Panama City law firm Mossack Fonseca, they’ve all been at it, so playing Stairway to Tax Heaven, you can either pick to be a sports star, politician or business exec as they try to avoid paying their share. But, in the game at least, tax avoidance isn’t actually as easy as you might…
The fact that Ian Cameron — father of UK Prime Minister David Cameron — ran a firm called “Blairmore Holdings” that rich Britons used to move their assets offshore and out of reach of UK taxation is no secret
World leaders and governments across the world on Monday went into damage control mode to deny possible financial wrongdoing after a cache of leaked documents showed them dodging taxes taxes or laundering money.
Power players from around the world are popping up in the Panama Papers, the leaked cache of 11 million documents that show the world’s elite hide billions in tax shelters
FROM THE START of the reporting based on Edward Snowden’s leaked document archive, government defenders insisted that no illegal behavior was revealed. That was always false: Multiple courts have now found the domestic metadata spying program in violation of the Constitution and relevant statutes and have issued similar rulings for other mass surveillance programs; numerous articles on NSA and GCHQ documented the targeting of people and groups for blatantly political or legally impermissible purposes; and the leak revealed that President Obama’s top national security official (still), James Clapper, blatantly lied when testifying before Congress about the NSA’s activities — a felony.
The 2.6 terabyte Panama Papers may be the first leak of their scale, but they won’t be the last.
When I first read about the leaked papers from the international law firm Mossack Fonseca I thought great, when I heard is wasn’t wikileaks they had been sent to but the corporate mainstream media I was less pleased. The Mossack Fonseca papers appear to expose the system that enables the ultra wealthy to hide their ill gotten gains, often corruptly obtained and all involved in tax avoidance.
openDemocracy editors respond to the astonishing revelations of the Panama Papers.
British Overseas Territories, many of which have been bound up in the leaks
Francesc Badia i Dalmases, Director, democraciaAbierta: “an old tradition of English piracy”
The Panama Papers implicate more than just a few select international leaders. They demonstrate how offshore finance and corrupt leaders in the post-Soviet space thrive off each other.
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