Taxmen in 22 countries worldwide have raked in more than USD 1.2 billion in fines and back taxes thanks to the 2016 “Panama Papers” leak of information about offshore dealings, media reported Wednesday.
Britain has recouped some USD 253 million, France $136 million and Australia $93 million, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) posted on its website.
German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung — which received the massive leak of documents from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca on which the investigation was based — reported Berlin has reaped USD 183 million from related tax probes.
“While recouping the proceeds of hidden assets helps to fund vital government services, there is a growing sentiment that the enduring legacy of the Panama Papers will be its effect on behavior and public attitudes,” the ICIJ said.
Tax authorities have scrambled to respond to the massive tax evasion system that the leak revealed was organized through Mossack Fonseca’s Panama City offices.
More than 100 media organizations participated in the investigation, which uncovered accounts in tax havens held by 140 politicians, football stars and billionaires and enjoyed a global media echo.
– AFP via Economics Times