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Numbers start to roll in for Portuguese caught in Panama Papers exposé

eurozoneThere are an estimated 23 private customers and 34 named beneficiaries caught up in the Panama Papers exposé alongside 244 businesses and 255 shareholders.

Buried among the 11.5 million documents that were released on Sunday evening are details of Portuguese clients of the law firm Mossack Fonseca who are are involved in offshore companies.

Portugal’s Public Prosecutor "is following" these cases as the revelations in the so-called Panama Papers may have saved Portuguese investigators years of work.

Tax evasion, money laundering, concealment of financial transactions and use of tax havens to ensure the anonymity of transactions all are under the newly polished spotlight.

The money involved in many of Portugal’s current high profile cases, Furacão and Monte Branco to name but two, ends up in offshore accounts and the job now is to trace transactions and find out who benefitted.

Bribery payments in the Paulo Portas’ submarine case involving German manufacturer Ferrostaal was paid offshore through BES but the trail for Portugal’s prosecutors went cold when overseas authorities refused to play ball and the answer came back that the bribe money went to ‘an account in the name of BES Directors.’

The Panama Papers refer to 244 companies based in Portugal with 255 shareholders listed as being linked to Portugal.

The Prosecutor "is following" these case and promises to act to establish any facts which reveal those involved in criminal activity and tax evasion.

When the crisis started there was a large outflow of funds from Portugal's wealthy to offshore accounts and companies; nothing illegal there as long as the owners declare income and interest received on their annual tax returns.

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+1 #6 Isabel Silva 2016-05-12 01:06
Why italian "corriere della sera" publish the names of all 280 italians found in Panama papers and in other countries the subject is being forgotten?
+1 #5 Poor Portugés 2016-04-10 15:24
Will the press now be able to name and shame those on the VIP tax-free list, such as "a jeweller, Group Espírito Santo directors, former ministers, politicians, estate agents, lawyers, owners of tourism businesses in the Algarve and a football agent" ?
-2 #4 Guido 2016-04-06 18:44
Attention please: till now NO CRIME has been committed as no case has been judged by a court. The only thing that is for sure is that a bunch of journalists sniffed into an unknown mines field that might eventually explose in their own faces ! Their exclusive and only drive to do this was: curiosity and looking after sensation !
Remember the LUXLEAKS : only a handful of people has to give thorough explanations to their tax officer and 1 or 2 had finally been fined ....
+4 #3 Mutley 2016-04-05 18:08
After the "revolution" the new leaders, well aware of those families, considered them future cronies. They wrote a new constitution and until today write laws that have a build in premeditated innocence. Nobody cares about ethics, morals or the people they are thought to represent. What is important is that you can say: " Look here, it is legal"
This Panamanian law firm will not be the only one involved in shielding corrupt politicians, global enterprises and bankers.
+7 #2 Malcolm.H 2016-04-05 12:19
Don't expect any revelations that connect to the 1,000 elite Portuguese families who have never seen tax paying as their concern. These families never paid tax in their own names in Salazar's time so why and indeed how - if all their beneficial ownerships are well hidden - would they begin paying their full rate now?

It always seemed odd that the 2010 Lagarde List or the earlier 2006-7 Falciani lists generated no irregularities here in Portugal. But then tax evasion and tax avoidance are terms applied to people in regimes where all citizens are equally subject to the responsibility of tax paying.
+8 #1 liveaboard 2016-04-05 00:24
With interest rates at around zero, there is often no interest income at all from bank accounts.
That often means no legal requirement to report the accounts.

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