Paradise Papers Leak

Paradise Papers Leak

Updated Nov 08, 2017 at 12:39PM EST by Matt.

Added Nov 08, 2017 at 10:32AM EST by Matt.

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Overview

The Paradise Papers Leak refers to the release of more than 13.4 million files that expose some of the world's biggest businesses, politicians, public figures, entertainers and sports stars as sheltering vast amounts of wealth in secret tax havens in offshore islands. The information spans a time period between 1950 and 2016. Similar to the Panama Papers Leak, the files reveal a massive attempt to evade taxes by storing money in an intricate series of businessed, properties and other high-priced assets.

Background

On November 5th, 2017, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, in collaboration with more than 380 journalists from over 90 media organizations in 67 countries, reported on the Paradise Papers, a 13.4 million document leak that exposed the trillions of dollars moved through offshore tax havens.[1] The documents were obtained by the German newspaper Süddeutsch Zeitung, who has not revealed how they received the information.

The Paradise Papers is comprised of 21 leaks of confidential documents from offshore law firms, Appleby, the Singaporean corporate services company Asiaciti Trust, the offshore trust management services company Estera Trust and 19 official corporate registries maintined by governments in Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, the Bahamas, Barbados, Bermuda, the Cayman Islands, the Cook Islands, Dominica, Grenada, Labuan, Lebanon, Malta, the Marshall Islands, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent, Samoa, Trinidad and Tobago, and Vanuatu.[3] Appleby, a more than century-old company, is at the center of the controversy as the documents show that the law firm helped clients "reduce their tax burden; obscure their ownership of assets like companies, private aircraft, real estate and yachts; and set up huge offshore trusts that in some cases hold billions of dollars," according to the New York Times.[2]

Some of the names of corporations and people's outed in the leak include Apple, Nike, Facebook , McDonald's, Yahoo, Queen Elizabeth, Bono, Nicole Kidman, Madonna, WIlbur Ross, Steven Mnuchin and more.

The day of the leak, the Guardian[4] released a video on YouTube explaining the leak. Within a three days, it had been viewed more than 279,000 times.



Development

Online Reaction

Following the release of the Paradise Papers, news of the leak reached the front page of several subreddits, including /r/worldnews twice, garnering more than 100,000 points in both instances.[5][6] Additionally, discussion of the leak could be seen on /r/politics,[8] /r/news[9] and more.

The following day, on November 6th, Redditor[7] SmokeyBare posted on the /r/AdviceAnimals subreddit an image macro of Conspiracy Keanu with the caption "Maybe if rich people actually paid their taxes people wouldn't ask them to pay more." The post (shown below) received more tahn 62,000 points (78% upvoted) and 3,500 comments.


MAYBE IFRICH PEOPLE ACTUALLY PAID THEIR TAXES PEOFLEWOULDN'T ASKTHEM TO PAY MORE

The following day, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders tweeted,[10] "Before Congress considers a tax bill it must investigate the Paradise Papers. We must end the rapid movement toward international oligarchy." The post (shown below) received more than 4,800 retweets and 11,200 likes in two days.


Bernie Sanders @SenSanders Before Congress considers a tax bill it must investigate the Paradise Papers. We must end the rapid movement toward international oligarchy. The Guardian @guardian Paradise Papers leak reveals secrets of the world elite's hidden wealth trib.al/aryM2ze

Impact

As of November 5th, the leaked documents have implicated dozens of current or former heads of state, including several members of the Trump administration, such as Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.[12] In addition to political figures, movie stars, film executives, singers and more were named, including Madonna, Bono, Shakira, "Martha Stewart":memes/people/martha-stewart, Justin Timberlake and Harvey Weinstein.

Entertainment Industry

  • Michael Hutchence, singer
  • Nicole Kidman, actress
  • Keith Urban, singer
  • Shakira, singer
  • Amitabh Bachchan, Bollywood actor
  • Manyata Dutt, actress
  • Bono, singer
  • José María Cano, painter and former member of Mecano
  • Fiona Delany, actress
  • Martin Delany, actor
  • Patrick Houlihan, actor
  • Keira Knightley, actress
  • Madonna, singer
  • Martha Stewart, television personality
  • Justin Timberlake, singer
  • Harvey Weinstein, film producer

Government Officials and Heads of State

  • Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdon
  • President of Colombia Juan Manuel Santos
  • President of Liberia Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
  • President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko
  • Former President of Costa Rica José María Figueres

Public Officials

  • Former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder
  • Former Prime Minister of Pakistan Shaukat Aziz
  • Prime Minister of Canada Jean Chrétien
  • Former Chancellor of Austria Alfred Gusenbauer,
  • Former Prime Minister of Japan Yukio Hatoyama,
  • Former Prime Minister of Canada Paul Martin
  • Former Prime Minister of Canada Brian Mulroney
  • Former Chancellor of Germany Gerhard Schröder
  • Former Prime Minister of Qatar Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani
  • Former Vice President of El Salvador Carlos Quintanilla Schmidt
  • Former Chief Minister of Rajasthan Ashok Gehlot
  • Chairman of the Great Indonesia Movement Party Prabowo Subianto,
  • Vice-governor of Jakarta Sandiaga Uno
  • Former Deputy Minister of Defense Khalid bin Sultan
  • Former presidential candidate and Supreme Allied Commander Europe Wesley Clark
  • Director of the National Economic Council Gary Cohn
  • Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman Jr.,
  • Vice Chairman for Supervision of the Federal Reserve Randal Quarles
  • Minister of Energy and former director of Shell Argentina Juan José Aranguren,
  • Minister of Finance Luis Caputo,
    *Minister of Agriculture Blairo Maggi
  • Minister of Finance Henrique Meirelles,
  • Former Minister of Energy and Trade of Kazakstan Mukhtar Ablyazov
  • Minister of Defence of Kazakstan Beibut Atamkulov
  • Minister of Oil and Gas of Kazakstan Sauat Mynbayev
  • Former Minister of Agriculture of Kenya Sally Kosgei
  • Former Secretary of Public Security of Mexico Alejandro Gertz Manero,
  • Minister of Serbia Nenad Popović,
  • Chairman pakistan tehreek insaf and Member of National Assembly
    United States Imran Khan
  • U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin,
  • Former U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker
  • Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross
  • Secretary of State Rex Tillerson
    Canada
  • Former member of the Canadian Senate Leo Kolber,
  • Member of the European Parliament Lithuania Antanas Guoga
  • Former member of Lok Sabha and former Minister of Corporate Affairs Sachin Pilot,
  • Member of the Lok Sabha and Minister of State for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha
  • Member of the Rajya Sabha Ravindra Kishore Sinha
  • Former member of the Council of RepresentativesMudhar Shawkat
  • Member of the House of Councillors Masamitsu Naito
  • Former member of the House of CouncillorsTaro Yamada
  • President of the Senate of Nigeria Bukola Saraki
  • Member of the State Duma Alexey Ezubov
  • Former member of the Verkhovna Rada Anton Pryhodsky
    United Kingdom
  • Former member of the House of Lords
  • Member of the House of Lords and former Commercial Secretary to the Treasury James Sassoon

Associates of Officials

  • Stephen Bronfman, close friend of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
  • Ibrahim Mahama, brother of former President John Mahama
  • Mareva Grabowski, wife of Kyriakos Mitsotakis, leader of the Opposition in the Greek parliament and head of the New Democracy party
  • Charles, Prince of Wales
  • Tommy and Mamiek Suharto, children of former President Suharto
  • Noor Al-Hussein, former Queen consort of Jordan[25]
  • Ana Kolarević, sister of former Prime Minister and President Milo Đukanović
  • Olga Shuvalova, wife of First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov
  • Corinna zu Sayn-Wittgenstein, mistress of emeritus king Juan Carlos I of Spain
  • Erkam and Bulent Yildirim, sons of Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım

Business People

  • Leonard Blavatnik, founder of Access Industries
  • Ivan Glasenberg, CEO of Glencore
  • Jean-Claude Bastos de Morais, entrepreneur
  • George Soros, founder of Soros Fund Management and Open Society Foundations
  • Alan Faena, hotelier and real estate developer
  • David Coe, founder of Allco Finance Group
  • Richard Goyder, chairman of AFL Commission and former CEO of Wesfarmers
  • John Kinghorn, founder of RAMS Home Loans and former shareholder of Allco Finance Group
  • Nicholas Moore, CEO of Macquarie Group
  • Danko Končar, the majority shareholder of the Afarak Group
  • Philippe Starck, designer
  • Curt Engelhorn, former owner of Roche Diagnostics and DePuy
  • Paul Gauselmann, founder and CEO of Gauselmann
  • Vijay Mallya, chairman of United Breweries Group
  • Bandi Parthasaradhi Reddy, founder of Hetero Drugs
  • Niira Radia, former corporate lobbyist
  • Ashok Seth, chairman of Fortis-Escorts
  • Dan Gertler, founder and president of Dan Gertler International Group
    *Jonathan Kolber, former CEO of Koor Industries and the beneficiary of the Kolber Trust and son of Canadian senator Leo Kolber
  • Idan Ofer, founder of Tanker Pacific and principal of Quantum Pacific Group
  • Alberto Baillères, chairman of Grupo BAL and ITAM
  • Carlos Slim, owner of Grupo Carso
  • Alauddin Feerasta, chairman of Soneri Bank
  • Sadruddin Hashwani, founder and chairman of Hashoo Group
  • Mian Muhammad Mansha, chairman of Nishat Group
  • Roman Abramovich, owner of Millhouse Capital and Chelsea F.C.
  • Leonid Mikhelson, CEO of Novatek
  • Yuri Milner, Silicon Valley investor
  • Marina Sechina, investor and ex-wife of Igor Sechin
  • Alisher Usmanov, oligarch
  • Bakr bin Laden, chairman of the Saudi Binladen Group
  • Daniel Maté, co-owner of Glencore
  • Juan Villalonga, former CEO of Telefónica
  • Christer Gardell, hedge fund manager
  • Bertil Hult, founder of EF Education First
  • Leif Östling, former CEO of Scania AB and chairman of Confederation of Swedish Enterprise
  • Rami Makhlouf, owner of Syriatel
  • Hugh van Cutsem, landowner, banker, businessman, and horse-breeder
  • Sheldon Adelson, founder of the Las Vegas Sands
  • Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft
  • Thomas J. Barrack Jr., founder of Colony NorthStar
  • J. Christopher and Robert Burch, brothers
  • John Augustine Hearst, business and media executive
  • Carl Icahn, founder of Icahn Enterprises
  • Charles and David Koch, respectively CEO and EVP of Koch Industries
  • Robert Mercer, co-CEO of Renaissance Technologies
  • Pierre Omidyar, founder of eBay
  • Geoffrey Palmer, real estate developer
  • Stephen A. Schwarzman, founder of The Blackstone Group
  • James Harris Simons, co-founder of Renaissance Technologies
  • Paul Singer, founder of Elliott Management Corporation
  • Warren Stephens, chairman, president, and CEO of Stephens Inc.
  • Steve Wynn, CEO of Wynn Resorts
  • Hakainde Hichilema, businessman and politician

Miscellaneous

  • Marcial Maciel, Catholic priest and founder of the Legion of Christ and Regnum Christi
  • Lewis Hamilton, Formula One driver

Companies

  • CAMMESA (Compañía Administradora del Mercado Mayorista Eléctrico)
  • Colonial First State
  • Commonwealth Bank
  • Shell Western Supply and Trading Limited, subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell
  • Appleby
  • Estera
  • Finnfund
    *Dassault Aviation
  • Allianz
  • Bayer
  • Deutsche Bank
  • Deutsche Post
  • Meininger
  • Siemens
  • Sixt
  • Apollo Tyres
  • Emaar India
  • GMR Group
  • Havells
  • Hindujas
  • Hiranandani Group
  • Jindal Steel and Power
  • Sun Group
  • United Spirits
  • Videocon
  • DST Global, part of Mail.Ru Group
  • Gazprom
  • TNK-BP
  • VTB Bank
  • Asiaciti Trust
  • Illovo Sugar
  • Investec
  • Shanduka Group
  • Standard Bank
  • Glencore
  • Barclays
  • Sol Antilles y Guianas Limited, subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell
  • Amazon
  • Apple Inc.
  • Baker McKenzie
  • Bank of Utah
  • Facebook
  • Goldman Sachs
  • McDonald's
  • Nike, Inc.
  • The Blackstone Group
  • Twitter
  • Uber
  • Walmart
  • Wynn Resorts
  • Yahoo!

Search Interest

External References

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Top Comments

Panuru
Panuru

This is a pretty broad question, so bear with me, but it's fundamental to how this makes no sense to me.

Let's say you're right in the middle of the middle class and make $50k a year. To choose a number, let's say that you pay $10k in taxes. If presented the opportunity to keep that $10k through a tax avoidance scheme, that could make the difference in funding college tuition, putting money into an IRA, or maybe paying cash for a car instead of taking out a loan. All non-survival-level stuff, but certainly taking some of the risk out of getting through life.

Now you're one of these dudes and you make $10 million. You can pay $5 million in taxes or go through a scheme to avoid it. Keeping that extra $5 million gets you…what? A bigger house for sure, but you can already afford a luxurious amount of space. More cars? You can only drive one at a time. I guess I'm just not seeing what the point of having money beyond a certain amount is.

+60

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