Author Topic: The Panama Papers: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak  (Read 707 times)

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Offline Fiery Winds

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Huge data leak (2.6 Terabytes, largest leak ever) implicating foreign leaders, celebrities, and other high-profile individuals and groups has been released today after being investigated by over 100 journalists over the past year.

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Over a year ago, an anonymous source contacted the Süddeutsche Zeitung (SZ) and submitted encrypted internal documents from Mossack Fonseca, a Panamanian law firm that sells anonymous offshore companies around the world. These shell firms enable their owners to cover up their business dealings, no matter how shady.
In the months that followed, the number of documents continued to grow far beyond the original leak. Ultimately, SZ acquired about 2.6 terabytes of data, making the leak the biggest that journalists had ever worked with. The source wanted neither financial compensation nor anything else in return, apart from a few security measures.
The data provides rare insights into a world that can only exist in the shadows. It proves how a global industry led by major banks, legal firms, and asset management companies secretly manages the estates of the world’s rich and famous: from politicians, Fifa officials, fraudsters and drug smugglers, to celebrities and professional athletes.

http://panamapapers.sueddeutsche.de/articles/56febff0a1bb8d3c3495adf4/


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Eleven million documents were leaked from one of the world's most secretive companies, Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca.They show how Mossack Fonseca has helped clients launder money, dodge sanctions and evade tax.
The company says it has operated beyond reproach for 40 years and has never been charged with criminal wrong-doing.
The documents show links to 72 current or former heads of state in the data, including dictators accused of looting their own countries.
Gerard Ryle, director of the ICIJ, said the documents covered the day-to-day business at Mossack Fonseca over the past 40 years.
"I think the leak will prove to be probably the biggest blow the offshore world has ever taken because of the extent of the documents," he said.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-35918844

There are already calls for the Prime Minister of Iceland to resign, and while there are no US ties at the moment, (possibly due to FATCA regulations), the Editor in Chief of Süddeutsche Zeitung responded to the lack of United States individuals in the documents, saying to "Just wait for what is coming next". (https://twitter.com/ploechinger/status/716763595820941312) (Apologies to Stadler for the Twitter link)  ;)


Wasn't sure whether to post in the GD or PR, but it seems the discussion may be more relevant to those who are more up to date on politics.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2016, 11:03:07 AM by Fiery Winds »
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Offline 73109

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Re: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2016, 06:37:35 PM »
Can't tell how big this is going to be. I can't help but feel like it will be business as usual again. Anything that seems to light up the conspiracy kooks on reddit more often than not gets a big yawn from me, but this seems vaguely important.

Online portnoy311

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Re: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2016, 08:43:17 PM »
This is humungous news.

We're talking about systematic corruption over much of the the western world. Unearthed.

Far more important than jabs at Twitter...

Offline El Barto

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Re: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #3 on: April 03, 2016, 09:54:03 PM »
The size of the leak might also be its biggest problem.  How?  People will not have the time to personally investigate this (or even understand), leaving it up to journalists that have shown extreme bias to provide the summaries and conclusions.  And not of every account, but the accounts they decide need to be attacked, while ignoring accounts that "hit to close to home" for their own financial well being or bias.
I think this is an instance where competition actually smooths things out. My opinion of FOX is likely the same as your opinion of The Liberal Media, and I think if Ted Cruz, Trump or GBSr were to be found with a billion dollars stashed away illegally they'd report it. It's too big a story not to. Especially since somebody else will turn it up anyway. I think even Huff Post would jump at the chance to break the story if Hillary or Bernie were squirreling away billions.

And the thing about people resenting tax dodgers is interesting. It seems that everybody is fine with cheating on their taxes up to a point commiserate to their own income. Poor guy finds a dodge and I'm fine with it. "You go, dude." My boss better be paying every damned cent he owes, though.
Argument, the presentation of reasonable views, never makes headway against conviction, and conviction takes no part in argument because it knows.
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Online portnoy311

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Re: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #4 on: April 03, 2016, 10:14:33 PM »
Are you talking about me? I hope you're not making a personal attack as I have no interest in playing the Calvin game.


https://panamapapers.icij.org/graphs/


I don't think people have wrapped their heads around how big this is. I don't think I have. Be prepared for some changes. Knee jerk to Enron and others gave us Sarbanes Oxley which frankly sucks and was one of the (many) reasons I hated accounting. I'm sure our governments will be totally fair in their legislation going forward.





Online portnoy311

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Re: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #5 on: April 03, 2016, 10:36:09 PM »
https://panamapapers.icij.org/graphs/


I don't think people have wrapped their heads around how big this is. I don't think I have. Be prepared for some changes. Knee jerk to Enron and others gave us Sarbanes Oxley which frankly sucks and was one of the (many) reasons I hated accounting. I'm sure our governments will be totally fair in their legislation going forward.

Offline El Barto

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Re: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #6 on: April 03, 2016, 10:38:27 PM »
El Barto, would you, as a journalist, choose to overlook reporting a pot dealer with a good reputation putting their money offshore simply because they don't want to see it seized in a DEA raid?

This is the critical thinking I'm talking about.  And yes, I could see an MSNBC choosing to gloss over that to go after a big, bad tycoon.
You got two problems there. One is a problem with scale. Nobody cares about dopers. If I tried to report it nobody would pay attention, and it certainly wouldn't make me anything. The other problem is that even if I, some reporter, wanted to overlook a big story that was problematic from a standpoint of personal ethics,  the person who publishes what I produce has no ethical quandaries.
Argument, the presentation of reasonable views, never makes headway against conviction, and conviction takes no part in argument because it knows.
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Offline El Barto

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Re: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2016, 11:05:23 PM »
You got two problems there. One is a problem with scale. Nobody cares about dopers.
Tell that to the people I know that had extreme expenses with an ever changing medicinal pot law of CA.  If one of these people (for some stupid reason) decided to confide in me that after the first raid, they have now started to move their earnings in offshore accounts, I'd completely understand.  Bare minimum, they are going to need that money for the legal expenses of their next raid.

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The other problem is that even if I, some reporter, wanted to overlook a big story that was problematic from a standpoint of personal ethics,  the person who publishes what I produce has no ethical quandaries.
Are you talking about completely overlooking the story, because that doesn't even seem to be on the table.  Has anybody even suggested that?
I've said that I think competition within the media will probably be a good check on what might be a developing story. I believe that to be true. After your last point, I clearly have no idea what your point is. I'm sympathetic to your green-thumb friends, but I'm not sure what they relate to my point.
Argument, the presentation of reasonable views, never makes headway against conviction, and conviction takes no part in argument because it knows.
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Offline Fiery Winds

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Re: The Panama Papers: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #8 on: April 04, 2016, 11:07:54 AM »
One thing to keep in mind to temper any rash judgments is that not all participants are necessarily involved in illegal activities. There are valid reasons individuals and corporations to utilize offshore accounts, and it remains to be seen who will be implicated in any wrongdoing.
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Online portnoy311

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Re: The Panama Papers: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #9 on: April 04, 2016, 05:15:42 PM »
« Last Edit: April 04, 2016, 05:24:09 PM by portnoy311 »

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Re: The Panama Papers: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #10 on: April 05, 2016, 05:58:54 AM »
http://www.mcclatchydc.com/news/nation-world/national/article69918377.html

Apparently none of "our" politicians were directly involved. Which is good I guess.

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Offline Chino

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Re: The Panama Papers: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2016, 12:04:43 PM »
Bernie Sanders Warned Congress About Panama’s Tax Havens In 2011

http://www.inquisitr.com/2962897/bernie-sanders-warned-congress-about-panamas-tax-havens-in-2011/

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the trade agreement with Panama would effectively bar the U.S. from cracking down on illegal and abusive offshore tax havens in Panama. In fact, combating tax haven abuse in Panama would be a violation of this free trade agreement, exposing the U.S. to fines from international authorities.
Read more at http://www.inquisitr.com/2962897/bernie-sanders-warned-congress-about-panamas-tax-havens-in-2011/#e2UXZ47pqjj19xuf.99

Online portnoy311

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Re: The Panama Papers: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #13 on: April 05, 2016, 04:10:20 PM »
Jumping to conclusions not based on the facts is notnonly futile, but extremely dangerous.

Offline Ben_Jamin

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Re: The Panama Papers: Offshore Tax Haven and Money Laundering Leak
« Reply #14 on: April 09, 2016, 10:10:14 AM »
David Cameron talked about it, I think yesterday. And also, the IRS closed for a week, and their was a fire in the basement. Now, that is some shady stuff, yet no mention of these things, at least I haven't heard anything on mainstream media.
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