A new major investigation into Britain’s offshore empires has exposed some of the world’s biggest corporations, global figures and heads of state. A substantial leak of over 13 million documents came from leading offshore firm Appleby, as well as corporate services provider Estera. The documents contain details about how the wealthiest corporations are sheltering their riches in secretive tax havens.
The files were obtained by the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung and shared by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. The project has been called Paradise Papers and has unveiled shocking information:
Millions of pounds from the Queen’s private estate has been invested in a Cayman Islands fund – and some of her money went to BrightHouse, a rent-to-own retailer accused of exploiting poor families and vulnerable people.
Donald Trump’s Cabinet
Extensive offshore dealings by Donald Trump’s cabinet members, advisers and donors, including substantial payments from a firm co-owned by Vladimir Putin’s son-in-law to the shipping group of the US commerce secretary, Wilbur Ross.
Twitter & Facebook
Though Twitter and Facebook were not directly implicated in the Paradise Papers, they received hundreds of millions of dollars in investments that can be traced back to Russian state financial institutions.
Kremlin-linked VTB which has helped fund purchases of large stakes in Twitter was involved in offshore activity. In addition, a financial subsidiary of energy company Gazprom also funded an offshore shell company. That entity invested in a Milner-affiliated company that held roughly $1bn in Facebook shares.
The BBC’s Panorama investigated the stakes used to buy Everton FC in February 2016. Farhad Moshiri is Everton’s biggest shareholder and denied claims that he was given millions of pounds by Arsenal director Alisher Usmanov to purchase the Merseyside club. The complex offshore webs suggest that the two billionaires broke Premier League ownership rules.
The files also revealed aggressive tax avoidance by multinational corporations, including Nike and Apple. As well as, the billions in tax refunds by the Isle of Man and Malta to the owners of private jets and luxury yachts.
I am Luke Miller, content manager at Truth Theory and creator of Potential For Change. I like to blend psychology and spirituality to help you create more happiness in your life.Grab a copy of my free 33 Page Illustrated eBook- Psychology Meets Spirituality- Secrets To A Supercharged Life You Control Here