The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists publishes today new data in the Offshore Leaks Database on close to 25,000 entities connected to the Paradise Papers investigation.
The new records come from the offshore law firm Appleby and cover a period of more than six decades through to 2014 of entities registered in more than 30 offshore jurisdictions. It includes information from shareholders, directors and other officers connected to offshore companies, foundations and trusts. It also reveals the names of the real owners behind those secret structures, when available.
More than 70 percent of the new records belong to entities incorporated in Bermuda and the Cayman Islands. Other jurisdictions that also include hundreds of new records are the Isle of Man, Jersey and Mauritius. Most of the online registries from these jurisdictions don’t provide ownership or shareholder information.
The Offshore Leaks Database also includes information from close to 500,000 additional offshore entities linked to ICIJ’s 2016 Panama Papers and Bahamas Leaks investigations and its 2013 Offshore Leaks investigation.
ICIJ is publishing the information in the public interest.
The data released today comes from the the Paradise Papers investigation, a global journalistic collaboration that exposed offshore deals of political players and corporate giants. The team of journalists explored a trove of 13.4 million records that come from two offshore firms and 19 secret jurisdictions.
The leaks were obtained by German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung and shared with ICIJ and a network of more than 380 journalists in 67 countries.
ICIJ is now making available only the structured portion of the Paradise Papers connected to the offshore law firm Appleby and some politicians featured in the Paradise Papers investigation. ICIJ is not publishing the totality of the leak and is not disclosing raw documents or personal information en masse.
The documents revealed offshore interests of the queen of England and more than 120 politicians around the world. It also exposed ties between Russia and U.S. President Donald Trump’s commerce secretary, the secret dealings of chief fundraiser for Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and tax engineering of more than 100 multinationals, including Apple, Nike and Uber.
The first data release comes almost two weeks after the first series of Paradise Papers publications, which have already captured the attention of the world and produced reactions in several countries.
Members of the European Parliament said that the European Union member states should take steps to clamp down on tax avoidance schemes while discussing the Paradise Papers revelations.
In the United States, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said he will divest his stake in shipping firm Navigator Holdings, while a group of senators have requested two official investigations into Ross’ financial holdings and potential conflicts of interest.
In Chile, two government agencies announced investigations into Paradise Papers revelations, while in Argentina a prosecutor issued arrest warrants for four officials at the University of Tucuman, in connection to an alleged money laundering scheme involving a mining company.
The new structured data added to the searchable database connects with more than 75,000 individuals and companies that play a key role in connection to offshore entities. The U.S., the United Kingdom, China and Canada are among the countries with the most officers represented in the new data.
The Offshore Leaks website now also connects profiles of politicians featured in the Paradise Papers and Panama Papers investigations with the full datasets from these projects.
In all, the Offshore Leaks Database has now information on more than 520,000 entities connected to 200 countries.
In addition to the Paradise Papers records, the database also includes information on more than 100,000 entities that come from Offshore Leaks, more than 210,000 entities from Panama Papers and more than 175,000 from Bahamas Leaks. ICIJ will release more data connected to the Paradise Papers in the coming weeks.
The new design of the Offshore Leaks database keeps some of the key features from the application that allow users to filter the information by country and by offshore jurisdiction. It is possible to explore details on trusts and offshore structures including data on company owners, proxies and intermediaries.
While the database contains otherwise unavailable information on offshore companies and their shareholders and officers, it does not necessarily include details on financial deals or all the significant personalities featured in Paradise Papers reporting. In many cases, the type of detailed information included in ICIJ and its partners stories was found buried in letters, emails, board meetings summaries, company reports, audits, financial statements, internal notes of Appleby employees. This unstructured data cannot easily be extracted in a systematic manner.
There are still more stories coming out from ICIJ’s Paradise Papers reporting partners, and more revelations will surface as regulators and ordinary citizens around the world begin to explore the new available data. The full dataset of the Offshore Leaks database is available for download.
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