The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) declassified over 11.9 million confidential files implicating 35 current and former world leaders and more than 330 politicians in 91 countries in acts of corruption linked to offshore activities.
ICIJ highlighted that the leaked records came from 14 offshore services firms worldwide that run shell and offshore companies for clients who wanted to keep their financial activities behind the scene.
The Pandora files revealed 956 companies in offshore havens tied to 336 high-level politicians and public officials, including presidents, cabinet ministers, ambassadors, artists, and others.
The files especially linked the Panamanian company Alcogal which created offshore structures on behalf of over 15,000 clients, mostly since 1996.
At least two-thirds of those companies were set up in the British Virgin Islands, and 14 out of 35 presidents or former presidents listed in the documents belong to the Latin America region.
In 2009, Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis bought a French estate through shell companies in tax havens, the #PandoraPapers found. https://t.co/YE07CIbhia
Here's what happened when we asked about his offshore company. pic.twitter.com/YpDIkBgtH0
— ICIJ (@ICIJorg) October 3, 2021
Chile’s President Sebastian Piñera, Ecuador’s President Guillermo Lasso, and Dominica Republic’s President Luis Abinader are the active top politician implicated in the leak. There are also 11 former presidents, among them, Colombia’s ex Presients Cesar Gaviria (1990-1994), Andres Pastrana (1998-2002), and Panama’s former Presidents Ernesto Perez (1994-1999), Ricardo Martinelli (2009-2014) and Juan Carlos Varela (2014-2019).
In Brazil, the Pandora Papers targeted two right-hand men to President Jair Bolsonaro, the Economy Minister Paulo Guedes, and the Central Bank President Roberto Campos.
Likewise, Mauricio Macri’s political consultant Jaime Duran Barba and Zulema Menem, daughter of former president Carlos Menem (1989-1999), are some of the Argentinean figures who allegedly receive kickbacks paid by contractors in offshore dealings.
The investigation is more extensive in Mexico, where 3,000 people are implicated in offshore corrupted deals, such as the mining magnate German Larrea and the Modelo beer group’s owners Maria Aramburuzabala, and Olegario Vazquez.
Neoliberalism is what pays for #corruption. pic.twitter.com/5tFikajC42
— teleSUR English (@telesurenglish) December 9, 2018