Fra The Sunday Times
A huge cache of 11.5m files leaked from a Panama law firm are gradually revealing how oligarchs, celebrities and even criminals hide assets worth billions of pounds in offshore companies.
Deals with brutal dictatorships, sprawling property empires and cash from heists have all been funnelled through these secret structures under a veil of anonymity – until their dramatic exposure began last Sunday.
Mossack Fonseca, a law firm in Panama, has been revealed as the centre of this lucrative and secret industry, paid by its clients to set up companies which hide their mansions, cash and business interests in complex webs of shell companies.
The Sunday Times Data Team has now compiled a list of companies in Panama set up by Mossack Fonseca and its associates, as well the directors, shareholders and legal agents of those companies, as reported to the Panama companies registry. Pictured above on the right, Ian Cameron, the prime minister’s father, had an offshore investment fund.
Many of these directors are stooges, paid by Mossack Fonseca to conceal the identity of the true owners. One of them is even reported to have been dead for years yet is still used as a director for current offshore companies. But others are bona fide – including David Cameron’s late father Ian – who is named in the database.
Using offshore companies is not a crime, and they do have some legitimate purposes. Just because a company or person appears in this list does not mean they have done anything wrong.
However, questions may be raised over the use of structures that conceal the true owners’ identity in complex schemes based the other side of the world. Search below to see for yourself:
A stooge director currently directing thousands of offshore companies for Mossack Fonseca has in fact been dead for more than a decade, leaked documents reveal.
A woman named Vianca Scott appears to currently sit on the boards of 10,361 Panama companies, the vast majority of which are offshore firms set up by Mossack Fonseca.
But a Dutch broadcaster with access to the Panama papers has found that Scott died in 2005. This did not seem to stop her joining the boards of new companies, signing papers, showing up at meetings and getting elected as a company secretary, the leaked documents show.
Yvette Rogers, another suspected stooge director, is alive, but documents show she supposedly runs more than 7,000 companies while living in a two-room bungalow in a forest 20 miles from Panama City. She declined to comment when approached by reporters.
Contact the Sunday Times Data Team: email@example.com
Data compiled by the Sunday Times Data Team using the OpenCorporates API.