Panama Papers analysis
The documents about the corporations, as many as 215000, have been linked to various high profile and wealthy individuals including retired and current heads of states, and touched on clandestine activities that had, at least until the famous leak of the documents, remained discrete and hidden from the public (Tan-Xue al. While passing the documents to Bastian Obermayer, a journalist, the person who obtained them from Mossack Fonseca’s premises, claimed his motivation was the documents’ representation of global inequalities and injustice. Although offshore companies are not an overall illegality, the analysis of materials by an international consortium of journalists pointed to the utilization of a section of the corporations established by the Mossack Fonseca for tax evasion, avoidance of embargoes, financial fraud, and money laundering, outrightly illegal activities.
The paper seeks to explore various aspects of the Panama Papers including the practices applied and discussed in the Papers, the extent of illegality in the papers, and the legal-ethical framework associated with leakage of the documents, particularly from the position of the referring party. Practices used and discussed The prominent practice involved in the Panama Papers is the creation of shell companies for various purposes. , 18) reiterates that Mossack Fonseca has been in the business of establishing corporations to abet illegal and irregular activities since the 1970s. Such activities include money laundering, tax evasion, and avoiding sanctions. Indeed, some of the clients that were established to be linked to Mossack Fonseca were of questionable repute, including criminals and members of mafia groups.
Furthermore, incidences of bribery and corruption that were linked to presidents were established as well. The investigating consortium of journalists traced some of the offshore companies to twelve former and current presidents (Obermaier et al. Interestingly, in their defense following the release of the Panama Papers, Mossack Fonseca cited the aspect of confidentiality towards the clients to avoid scrutiny and questions from curious journalists. Tax havens are also deficient in tax transparency thereby creating a fertile environment for tax avoidance and evasion due to unsupportive regulatory frameworks (Malan 24). The lacking transparency remains a massive impediment for home jurisdictions to tackle taxation malpractices. The transition from a Legal activity into Illegal Activity While shell companies may be used to conduct shady businesses, avoid taxation, and money laundering by hiding the names of the real owners, it is worth noting that they can be perfectly legal.
Jancsics (2) provides some of the scenarios where offshore shell companies do not constitute illegality. Indeed, money launderers, tax evaders, and financiers of terrorism are believed to take advantage of being able to control and move money, even across borders, and still remain anonymous. Legal Culpability: accomplices or conspiratorial liability? Legal culpability and a determination of either conspiratorial liability or being an accomplice vary from case to case depending on the facts available and the existence or absence of mutual assistance or information exchange agreements. Therefore, depending on circumstances, the perpetrator and the enabling offshore company may bear legal liability. In the US, tax evasion and money laundering, both of which can be accomplished using shell companies are outlawed. Various forms of money laundering are described in the federal law; concealment, promotional, structuring, and tax evasion laundering (Congressional Research Service 3).
Legally, John Doe could be liable for fiduciary-related liability. Still, considering the moral bearing of the matter, he could have considered his organization’s expectation of trust and confidence as not superseding the moral obligation for justice and equality. Therefore, referring necessitates scrutiny of issues involved and striking a balance about the ethical dimension of the action. As earlier noted, the activities associated with offshore shell companies are two-fold; legal and illegal. Some of the clients who open shell companies have legitimate business and asset management motivations. "Panama Papers and The Dilemma Of Global Financial Transparency. " International Journal of Modern Research in Management (2018): 18, 19. Print. https://www. researchgate. N. p. Web. 8 Dec. Malan, Jack, Roland Blomeyer, and Jan Smit. europa. eu/RegData/etudes/STUD/2017/572717/IPOL_STU(2017)572717_EN.
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