Sunday, April 03, 2016

Mauricio Macri and the Panama Papers

Argentine President Mauricio Macri has been named in news reports as one of the principals, along with his father, in what could be a tax-dodging shell company in the Bahamas. (Escándalo: Macri, implicado en el informe mundial sobre sociedades en paraísos fiscales El Destape 03.04.2016; Putin, Macri y Messi copan los titulares internacionales en investigación periodística global Univision 03.04.2016)

Setting up an offshore company is not illegal. But if well-known public figures or powerful government officials for tax-evasion or other illegitimate purposes, that's obviously likely to turn into problems with them.

The information comes from an investigative report, The Panama Papers, an investigative report from the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ). This particular investigation has a small host of Reporting Partners. The three featured most prominently are the Süddeutsche Zeitung (Munich), The Guardian and BBC News.

This video from the ICIJ starts with the war in Syria! The Panama Papers: Victims of Offshore 04/03/2016:

The "Panama" comes from the location of the law firm Mossack Fonseca, which "administers offshore firms for a yearly fee. Other services include wealth management." (Luke Harding, The Panama Papers: what you need to know The Guardian 04/03/2016; Süddeutsche Zeitung 03.04.2016) There are even Nazi and CIA connections! You just know there are screenwriters already at work on TV and movie scripts based on this. The Nazi connection is that the father of the partner Jürgen Mossack was a member of the Waffen-SS and later worked with the CIA. (Martha Hamilton, Mossack Fonseca, un bufete global Univision 03.04.2016)

Internationally, revelations relating to Vladimir Putin will likely attract much more attention than Macri in this story. (Petra Blum et al, Putins beste Freunde Süddeutsche Zeitung 03.04.2016; Luke Harding, Revealed: the $2bn offshore trail that leads to Vladimir Putin The Guardian 04/03/2016) This video report from The Guardian sketches the Putin part of the story, How to hide a billion dollars-The Panama Papers 04/03/2016:

Iceland's Prime Minister Sigmundur Gunnlaugsson is already facing calls for his resignation over information about him revealed in the investigation. (Panama Papers: Iceland PM's investments questioned BBC News 04/03/2016; Frederik Obermaier und Bastian Obermayer, Im Schatten-Kabinett Süddeutsche Zeitung 03.04.2016; English version: A storm is coming)

The pro-Western President of Ukraine, Petro Poroschenko, who according to this report is worth $858 million, shows up in the Panama Papers, too: Cathrin Kahlweit et al, Wie der ukrainische Präsident mitten im Krieg eine Briefkastenfirma gründen ließ Süddeutsche Zeitung 03.04.2016. See also: Josef Redl, Raiffeisen und die Deals des ukrainischen Präsidenten Falter 04.03.2016

Even Argentine soccer superstar Lionel Messi of FC Barcelona and his father have been implicated in the report. The Spanish site Sport reports that Messi is preparing to sue the ICIJ over the news. He's already being investigated on suspicion of tax evasion. (Noticia Sport: Messi pasa a la ofensiva y denunciará a los que le implican en 'Los papeles de Panamá' 03.04.2016; Mauritius Much und Bastian Obermayer, Wie Lionel Messi die Steuer ausdribbelt Süddeutsche Zeitung 03.04.2016

The already scandal-plagued international soccer governing body FIFA has had new questions raised by the document revelations. (Thomas Kistner et al, Doppeltes Spiel Süddeutsche Zeitung 03.04.2016)

This report is from Euronews Panama Papers: biggest leak in history published by German newspaper 04/03/2016:

There are a lot of available reports on the Panama Papers. These are some on the Macri information:

El comunicado de Presdencia tras el escándalo por la sociedad de Macri en Bahamas El Destape 03.04.2016

El estudio que utilizó Macri para crear su cuenta offshore es el mismo que el de Lázaro Baez El Destape 03.04.2016

El presidente Macri envuelto en un escándalo internacional Página/12 03.04.2016

La insólita justificación de Laura Alonso por la cuenta de Macri en Bahamas El Destape 03.04.2016

Las excusas de Macri, un administrador "de vez en cuando" Página/12 03.04.2016

Más de 70 personalidades mundiales involucradas en una investigación de lavado de dinero Télam 03.04.2016

Here are some more general reports:

Richard Bilton, Panama Papers: Mossack Fonseca leak reveals elite's tax havens BBC News 04/03/2016

Jonty Bloom, Panama Papers Q&A: How assets are hidden and taxes dodged BBC News 04/03/2016

Tamoa Calzadilla, Un matrimonio cercano a Chávez terminó con empresas en paraísos fiscales y cuenta en Suiza Univision 03.04.2016

Gráfico interactivo: El poder de los jugadores Univision 03.04.2016

Kevin Hall and Marisa Taylor, Massive leak exposes how the wealthy and powerful hide their money

Martha Hamilton, Panamanian Law Firm Is Gatekeeper To Vast Flow of Murky Offshore Secrets ICIJ 04/03/2016

Luke Harding, Sergei Roldugin, the cellist who holds the key to tracing Putin’s hidden fortune The Guardian 04/03/2016

Tim Johnson, A well-connected Mexican tycoon stashes a fortune overseas McClatchy Newspapers 04/03/2016

Colm Keena, Dublin firm acted as sales agent for aerospace, defence giant The Irish Times 04/03/2016

Hans Leyendecker et al, Die Firma Süddeutsche Zeitung 03.04.2016

Nicholas Nehamas, How secret offshore money helps fuel Miami’s luxury real-estate boom Miami Herald 04/03/2016

Tomás Ocaña, La oficinista de las 11,000 empresas Univision 03.04.2016, about Leticia Montoya with the Mossack Fonseca firm

Peniley Ramírez, Empresario peruano detrás de negocio con Cuba de pasaportes venezolanos Univision 03.04.2016

Gerardo Reyes, Empresario prófugo de Estados Unidos abrió sociedades en paraísos fiscales Univision 03.04.2016

Gerardo Reyes, Herederos del fundador del paramilitarismo crearon complejo de sociedades para guardar fortunas Univision 03.04.2016

Gerardo Reyes, Mossack Fonseca abrió las puertas a empresarios cuestionados por lavado de dinero en México Univision 03.04.2016

Gerardo Reyes, Narcos, políticos y empresarios usaron los servicios de una firma panameña para ocultar sus fortunas Univision 03.04.2016

Ronny Rojas, Firma presidida por narcotraficante guatemalteca fue cliente del bufete Univision 03.04.2016

Jakob Schulz, Gysi fordert bei Anne Will Verbot von Geldanlage in Briefkastenfirmen Süddeutsche Zeitung 03.04.2016

Geschäfte mit Offshore-Gesellschaften ORF (Austria) 03.04.2016

Elise Worthington and Lisa Main, Panama Papers: Tax office investigating 800 Australians identified in financial record leak ABC News (Australia) 04/04/2016

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