Leaks reveal secrets of the rich who hide cash offshore

| 04/04/2013

(The Guardian): Millions of internal records have leaked from Britain's offshore financial industry, exposing for the first time the identities of thousands of holders of anonymous wealth from around the world, from presidents to plutocrats, the daughter of a notorious dictator and a British millionaire accused of concealing assets from his ex-wife. The leak of 2m emails and other documents, mainly from the offshore haven of the British Virgin Islands (BVI), has the potential to cause a seismic shock worldwide to the booming offshore trade, with a former chief economist at McKinsey estimating that wealthy individuals may have as much as $32tn (£21tn) stashed in overseas havens.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    If certain individuals weren't on the run from the IRS Cayman wouldn't have Camana Bay!

  2. taxhavensguide says:

    This storry will likely have consequences for the financial sector and the offshore services industry. The pressure of the public opinion may force Governments to take new measures against tax havens and secrecy. However, another thing is if they are after really enforced or not. The more than 200 tax exchange agreements signed since 2009 haven't brought much results, for instance. 

  3. Resident 101 says:

    It is disturbing to me, because I think the names of all account holders should be kept confidential. Why is the personal information being made public?  And to whose advantage is this information being made available?  Does this mean in the future that any legal record on a worldwide, may be tapped into to divulged people's personal information?  Is the world becoming a place where confidentiality is not being respected anymore?  These things concern me alot. I have nothing to hide, but I do mind what I have worked so hard to save for being made available in the hands of another to economically measure me and hence how they may control me. They disclose these private details with no regard on how this impacts the BVI islands and their banking industry.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Do the have the owners of Midland Acres on the list?

  5. Will Ya Listen! says:

    That's what you get for doing things on the cheap.

  6. Anonymous says:

    On no… Not sure of the impact this will have on our financial industry. Wonder how some of the candidates business interests disclosures will read now.

  7. Anonymous says:

    …….and we justput the brakes on trying to implement a Data Protection law in Cayman!  Only by good luck, not good management, does that Article read British Virgin Islands and not Cayman.

    Not that a law by itself is going to stop a leak, but making organization's truely accountable for the impact of a leak (accidental or otherwise) sharpens their focus on protection – which is where change needs to come.   And who knows, maybe a well designed and implemented data protection program, with appropriate data loss prevention tools, could have stopped some of this information being accessed and released on mass.   200 gigabytes of data is an awfully large amount of data to somehow slip out.

    Now would have been a really good time to have been able to say "Hey world, we take data protection very seriously as an offshore jurisdiction, and we're putting robust relevant data protection laws and systems, equivalent to the EU's data protection rules, in place to address it".

    An opportunity lost, and frankly given the state of IT/InfoSec at many organizations here in Cayman, this will happen here too….again (we've had the prior Cayman Wikileaks relating to JB).



    • Anonymous says:

      The joke is that Private Eye magazine has repeatedly pointed out over the last two years that the overall owners of the Guardian newspaper (whose circulation has dropped to 200,000 a day-a shocking decline for a once respected paper) are pruning their tax responsibilities by doing business through…….the Cayman Islands!!

    • Anonymous says:

      Just a dumb question, I thought Mr Travers and all his friends said we were not hiding money anymore. I thought we were in the business of providing a Tax Neutral ………….

      • Anonymous says:

        It would be funny if children were not dying in third world countries because of it.

        • Will Ya Listen! says:

          Mr Travers is indirectly involved in killing children? Luckily we have  laws so nobody knows anything about it. To be on the safe side let's bring him to justice. Off with his head – which is full of good ideas – he is a menace to people who have absolutely no idea what they are talking about.

          I'm sick and tired of all the ills in the world being blamed on Cayman. The Brits and Yanks can't get their own houses in order and still insist on pointing fingers at jurisdictions that merely provide a service  which, incidentially, is used by their own politicians and corporations.

          Cayman has numerous tax treaties regarding the supplying of information when legally requested to do so. What Mr. T  "and his friends" are saying is that Cayman enjoys "privacy" as distinct from "secrecy". There is an enormous difference between the two concepts.

          Try and keep up.

        • Anonymous says:

          Oh please give me a break.  Wealthy people/ countries could never pay off the debt they owe third world countries for going in and stealing anything and everything they could get their hands on- from Ivory to shark oil.  So go figure!! 

        • Anonymous says:

          Children are dying in 3rd world nations because wealthy 1st world nations would rather spend hundreds of billions on arms than on vanquishing poverty. Hypocrite.

      • Anonymous says:

        There is no requirement for offshore service providers to be present in the room looking over the shoulder of their client (or accountant) as they sign off and mail in their annual tax return.  It is impossible to confirm that every client makes a full and truthful declaration, just as it is impossible to say if the multitude of domestic cash businesses in these countries are making a full andcomplete declaration.  All those thousands of families with undeclared vacation condos may be in a similar boat.

      • Anonymous says:

        Ummm … are not be BVI.

    • Anonymous says:

      Or we could stop helping the rich avoid taxes which is a very odd pastime for a "Christian" nation.

      • Anonymous says:

        ssssshhhh!…… its called 'financial services'…….

      • Anonymous says:

        Don't downplay it, a very old passtime was laundering drug money there are plenty off old Cyamanians that got rich due to this and it also kick started Caymans financial services boom..So when you start looking a rich folks with a cut eye remember that a lot of your own people were in on it..