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Mossack Fonseca serviced Assad cousin's firms despite Syria corruption fears

Bergslagstroll

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The Panama papers show that many in the wealthy elite have no problem not only hiding their wealth but also no problem with doing business with companies that helps dictators staying in power.

The firm at the centre of the Panama Papers leak serviced a string of companies for a top financier in Bashar al-Assad’s government in the face of international concern about corruption within the Syrian regime.

Documents show Mossack Fonseca’s links to Rami Makhlouf, a cousin of the Syrian president, who was described in US diplomatic cables as the country’s “poster boy for corruption”.


Washington sanctioned Makhlouf in February 2008 as a regime insider who “improperly benefits from and aids the public corruption of Syrian regime officials”. It blacklisted his brother Hafez Makhlouf in 2007.


The documents show, however, that the Panamanian firm continued to work with the Makhloufs, and in January 2011 it rejected the advice of its own compliance team to cut ties with the family as the crisis in Syria began to unfold.

Panama Papers: Mossack Fonseca serviced Assad cousin's firms despite Syria corruption fears | News | The Guardian

More about Mossack Fonseca dealing with dictators.

There is evidence in the Panama Papers that at least 22 individuals placed on sanctions blacklists by the US and the EU were connected to companies on the books of Mossack Fonseca, either as shareholders, directors or beneficiaries. At least 17 of these individuals had sanctions imposed while Mossack Fonseca was acting for their companies. Some 24 companies named in sanctions lists are also found in the files.

Sanctions: key questions answered | News | The Guardian

That by hiding their wealth rich people also support operations that can be used by dictators, organized crime and terrorists.
 

Thoreau72

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The Panama papers show that many in the wealthy elite have no problem not only hiding their wealth but also no problem with doing business with companies that helps dictators staying in power.



Panama Papers: Mossack Fonseca serviced Assad cousin's firms despite Syria corruption fears | News | The Guardian

More about Mossack Fonseca dealing with dictators.



Sanctions: key questions answered | News | The Guardian

That by hiding their wealth rich people also support operations that can be used by dictators, organized crime and terrorists.

Did you see how many Brits were exposed by the PP?

Wonder if Assad was following the lead of his British friends, as he was schooled in Britain?
 

Andalublue

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Did you see how many Brits were exposed by the PP?

Wonder if Assad was following the lead of his British friends, as he was schooled in Britain?

Thus far, I've noted that banks or individuals cited in the hack of Mossack Fonseca records include those from:

China
Russia
UK
USA
Argentina
Syria
Libya
Spain
France
Luxembourg
Iceland
Ukraine
North Korea

I've no doubt that list will lengthen considerably in the coming days and weeks. Limiting concern to one or two countries is diversionary.

Having said that, I believe that the UK ought to take direct administration measures against some of the worst offending offshore tax havens such as the BVI, Cayman Islands, Jersey, Man, and Gibraltar. I hope that other tax havens have their wings clipped too.

Luxembourg
Andorra
Switzerland
Panama
Monaco
Puerto Rico
Cyprus
Delaware

All the above operate business environments that are opaque and ripe for, if not actually in use as, tax havens for illicit business activity.
 

Thoreau72

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Thus far, I've noted that banks or individuals cited in the hack of Mossack Fonseca records include those from:

China
Russia
UK
USA
Argentina
Syria
Libya
Spain
France
Luxembourg
Iceland
Ukraine
North Korea

I've no doubt that list will lengthen considerably in the coming days and weeks. Limiting concern to one or two countries is diversionary.

Having said that, I believe that the UK ought to take direct administration measures against some of the worst offending offshore tax havens such as the BVI, Cayman Islands, Jersey, Man, and Gibraltar. I hope that other tax havens have their wings clipped too.

Luxembourg
Andorra
Switzerland
Panama
Monaco
Puerto Rico
Cyprus
Delaware

All the above operate business environments that are opaque and ripe for, if not actually in use as, tax havens for illicit business activity.

I'm going to watch this story develop a bit more....
 

PoS

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When I first heard about mossack fonseca I thought it was a casserole dish of some sort...
 

Bergslagstroll

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Did you see how many Brits were exposed by the PP?

Wonder if Assad was following the lead of his British friends, as he was schooled in Britain?

Yes it is a sad possibility that Assad learned alot about hiding wealth and getting around sanctions but nothing about democracy and human rights during his time in the UK. Also there are a tax haven in the middle of London.

The tax haven in the heart of Britain

But this leak contains countries all over the world. Also it was probably not only Mossack Fonseca that didn't care about who their customers was but also the western banks like for example Nordea here in Sweden that used their service for their clients didn't care. So the banks probably in many case didn't checked if the person trying to hide his/hers money was a business leader, a dictator, a mobster or a terrorist. Also the entire point of this kind of operations is to hide the real owner of the money. So the concern should not only be about the enormous amount of wealth that is hidden from taxation but also how this kind of operations can help dictators and criminals.
 

Thoreau72

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Yes it is a sad possibility that Assad learned alot about hiding wealth and getting around sanctions but nothing about democracy and human rights during his time in the UK. Also there are a tax haven in the middle of London.

The tax haven in the heart of Britain

But this leak contains countries all over the world. Also it was probably not only Mossack Fonseca that didn't care about who their customers was but also the western banks like for example Nordea here in Sweden that used their service for their clients didn't care. So the banks probably in many case didn't checked if the person trying to hide his/hers money was a business leader, a dictator, a mobster or a terrorist. Also the entire point of this kind of operations is to hide the real owner of the money. So the concern should not only be about the enormous amount of wealth that is hidden from taxation but also how this kind of operations can help dictators and criminals.

I am just a bit suspicious of how this is being presented, and of the organization doing the presenting, International Coalition of Journalists, or whatever it's called.

In my local print newspaper yesterday it was about a half-page story, and the first third of the story was implicating Putin, EVEN THOUGH the story clearly stated Putin's name was not found in the released material so far. So it was typical anti-Putin rhetoric so common in the western media.

Then a story at Common Dreams this morning quoted the head of the International Journalists denigrating both WikiLeaks and Manning, bragging that International Journalists were practicing 'responsible journalism' while Assange and Manning were not. Another hatchet-job, this time on Assange and Manning.

So, I'm still trying to see just where they are going with this. Is it really good journalism, or is its propaganda value greater than the sum of its parts?
 

Andalublue

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In my local print newspaper yesterday it was about a half-page story, and the first third of the story was implicating Putin, EVEN THOUGH the story clearly stated Putin's name was not found in the released material so far. So it was typical anti-Putin rhetoric so common in the western media.
You'd have to be blind not to see the connection between the cello player and godfather of Putin's daughter and Putin himself. What was a concert cellist doing arranging $200 million bank loans. He's a bag-man for Putin. It's not a difficult or a wildly conspiratorial logical step to take.

Then a story at Common Dreams this morning quoted the head of the International Journalists denigrating both WikiLeaks and Manning, bragging that International Journalists were practicing 'responsible journalism' while Assange and Manning were not. Another hatchet-job, this time on Assange and Manning.
Yes, I don't understand that, at all.

Is it really good journalism, or is its propaganda value greater than the sum of its parts?
Releasing the docs isn't journalism at all. Time will tell whether the explanations and analysis that the various media outlets do with the Panama Papers turns out to be good journalism. I do applaud openness and transparency however, especially in relation to the private profits of public officials.
 

Thoreau72

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You'd have to be blind not to see the connection between the cello player and godfather of Putin's daughter and Putin himself. What was a concert cellist doing arranging $200 million bank loans. He's a bag-man for Putin. It's not a difficult or a wildly conspiratorial logical step to take.

Yes, I don't understand that, at all.

Releasing the docs isn't journalism at all. Time will tell whether the explanations and analysis that the various media outlets do with the Panama Papers turns out to be good journalism. I do applaud openness and transparency however, especially in relation to the private profits of public officials.

And I guess now it's being reported that ICIJ and the other outfit releasing the docs are picking and choosing which docs to release. That is, unlike the way Wikileaks did it, the information is selectively released. All the material is not released to the open web.

Further, ICIJ and the other are supported by Soros and his people, and the Ford Foundation and Kellogg, long associated with CIA.

It does indeed seem that the propaganda value, as it is being spun, is greater than the sum of the (selectively released) parts.
 

Manc Skipper

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I heard a passing radio report that 75 past or current world leaders are named. It's international.
 

ChezC3

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Thus far, I've noted that banks or individuals cited in the hack of Mossack Fonseca records include those from:

China
Russia
UK
USA
Argentina
Syria
Libya
Spain
France
Luxembourg
Iceland
Ukraine
North Korea

I've no doubt that list will lengthen considerably in the coming days and weeks. Limiting concern to one or two countries is diversionary.

Having said that, I believe that the UK ought to take direct administration measures against some of the worst offending offshore tax havens such as the BVI, Cayman Islands, Jersey, Man, and Gibraltar. I hope that other tax havens have their wings clipped too.

Luxembourg
Andorra
Switzerland
Panama
Monaco
Puerto Rico
Cyprus
Delaware

All the above operate business environments that are opaque and ripe for, if not actually in use as, tax havens for illicit business activity.

you forgot Nevada.
 

Bergslagstroll

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I heard a passing radio report that 75 past or current world leaders are named. It's international.

Yes and with journalist from all of the world. Their the journalist is focusing on the connections to clients in their respective countries and then share their findings. But the Panama Papers show also how globalized the hiding of wealth is. For example the Swedish bank Nordea corporated with Mossak Fornesca through their Luxemburg office and didn't not only help Swedish customers but also for example associates to the Kazakstanian dictator.

Also even if I havn't heard any findings about it in the Panama papers, tax havens and shell corporations could be very usefull for groups like AQ and ISIS.
 
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