ICIJ · The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists

The Panama Papers Reading List

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Founders of Panama Papers Law Firm Arrested on Money Laundering Charges

Police in Panama arrested the founders of Mossack Fonseca, the law firm at the center of the Panama Papers scandal, on money laundering charges Thursday after authorities raided the firm’s headquarters as part of investigations into Brazil’s largest-ever bribery scandal.

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Tax Agencies Draw Up ‘Target List’ of Offshore Enablers

Tax agencies from 30 countries convened in Paris this week to take part in the largest ever simultaneous exchange of tax information and to share results and details on thousands of investigations sparked by the Panama Papers.

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Panama’s Revolving Door Shows Global Challenge of Offshore Reform

In a country where top-drawer lawyers move freely between high government posts and law firms selling secrecy-cloaked shell companies, bringing lasting change to the offshore industry is a challenge.

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Journalists Hang Tough in Face of Backlash Against Panama Papers Reporting

Reporters have faced consequences both in nations where media crackdowns are common and also in nations with reputations for high levels of press freedom.

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Panama Papers Have Had Historic Global Effects — and the Impacts Keep Coming

The investigation has produced an almost daily drumbeat of regulatory moves, follow-up stories and calls by politicians and activists for more action to combat offshore financial secrecy.

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BVI Hits Mossack Fonseca With Largest Fine Ever After Panama Papers Investigation

The $440,000 penalty followed a six-month investigation which included on-site compliance inspections and the appointment of an officer to monitor Mossack Fonseca's operations.

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Experts Who Quit Panama's Transparency Commission Produce Their Own Report

Report's authors say that the U.S. and EU have the power to force other nations to embrace transparency reforms by threatening to cut off access to their financial systems.

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Pakistan's PM Responds to Supreme Court Hearing on Panama Papers

Nawaz Sharif defended himself before the nation’s highest court, as opposition supporters celebrated in Islamabad.

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Panama Hires PR Firm Amid Ongoing Panama Papers Fallout

A PR firm is being paid $50,000 a month to help the Panama government, while arrests, protests and more continue around the world.

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Hedge Fund Sues Mossack Fonseca For Alleged Obstruction of Justice in Nevada

Confidential emails revealed in the Panama Papers have opened a new front in a bitter court battle in Nevada involving a hedge fund led by an American billionaire, new court filings show.

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Experts Quit Panama's Transparency Committee Over Lack of Transparency

The committee was established in the wake of the Panama Papers to probe Panama's financial services industry, but now two out of three international members have resigned.

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Continent of Secrets: Uncovering Africa's Offshore Empires

Africa receives $50 billion of foreign aid money annually, but then loses roughly the same amount through illicit outflows. Can you uncover Africa's offshore empires? Play now!

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Secret Offshore Deals Deprive Africa of Billions in Natural Resource Dollars

The Panama Papers show how politicians and mining, oil and gas interests benefit from secrecy and dubious multimillion dollar transfers.

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Secret Documents Expose Nigerian Oil Mogul’s Offshore Hideaways

A dealmaker’s backstage maneuverings are revealed in the Panama Papers as he hung with celebrities while criminal investigators closed in.

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Diamond Mine with Offshore Ties Leaves Trail of Complaints

The Panama Papers reveal a network of shell companies linked to a mining operation that has been accused of environmental harms and unpaid taxes.

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Out of Africa, Into Tax Havens

As visitors come to see what’s in Africa, some safari operators’ profits head offshore.

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Reporters Warned, Inquiries Opened as African Nations Respond to Panama Papers

Mossack Fonseca targeted clients in Africa for business, but now some of those clients have become targets themselves as authorities launch investigations into the Panama Papers revelations.

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Panama Papers Credited As New EU Anti Money-Laundering And Tax Abuse Rules Proposed

The European Commission has announced it will tighten the European Union’s anti-money laundering rules and increase transparency requirements for companies and trusts.

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Venezuela and Panama To Launch Joint Panama Papers Investigation

The joint investigation will be the "first of its kind," and Venezuela's attorney general has hinted at a long list of suspects.

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European Inquiry to Call UK Chancellor, Mossack Fonseca to Testify

A special 65-member Panama Papers committee of inquiry has been created by the European parliament to investigate potential wrongdoing exposed by ICIJ's investigation.

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Mossack Fonseca's US Operations Under Pressure, Island Offices Closed

Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca’s local affiliate in Nevada has resigned from more than 1,000 companies and paid a penalty to the state amid investigations on multiple fronts.

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US States Under Pressure As World Pushes For Financial Transparency

Nevada, Wyoming and Delaware are facing growing pressure over their lack of corporate transparency, as the United States and the international community continue to respond to fallout from the Panama Papers.

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The Malefactors of Mossack Fonseca

Meet The Dutchman, the Queen of the South, the Boss of Bosses and other convicted felons and alleged wrongdoers who have benefited from services provided by the law firm.

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Panama Papers Include Dozens of Americans Tied to Fraud and Financial Misconduct

Mossack Fonseca's files include offshore companies linked to at least 36 Americans accused of serious financial wrongdoing, including fraud and racketeering.

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Beyond Panama: Unlocking the world’s secrecy jurisdictions

The 21 jurisdictions covered by the Panama Papers data vary from the rolling hills of Wyoming to tropical getaways like the British Virgin Islands. But all have at least one thing in common - secrecy is the rule.

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Panama Papers Source Offers Documents To Governments, Hints At More To Come

The anonymous whistleblower behind the Panama Papers has conditionally offered to make the documents available to government authorities.

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US Officials React to Panama Papers Disclosures With Get-Tough Proposals

The Obama administration has proposed a national registry documenting the real owners of shell companies and other measures aimed at fighting offshore chicanery.

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Iceland’s First Lady Linked to Offshore Investments

Records in the Panama Papers and the Swiss Leaks leaked files tie the wife of Iceland President Ólafur Grímsson to offshore companies and accounts.

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Coming Soon: ICIJ to Release Panama Papers Offshore Companies Data

The database, to be released on May 9, will likely be the largest ever release of secret offshore companies and the people behind them.

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Cartel-Linked Suspects Arrested After Panama Papers Revelations

Uruguayan prosecutors are seeking to bring to trial at least five individuals detained on suspicion of laundering money for a powerful Mexican drug cartel.

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US Prosecutor Opens Investigation Into 'Panama Papers Matters'

ICIJ welcomes the interest from the Manhattan U.S. Attorney's office, but has made it clear it won't be turning over its data or taking part in any investigation.

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Banks Ordered to Provide Info on Panama Dealings to NY Regulator

More than a dozen banks identified in the Panama Papers investigation have been asked to hand over details of their communications with Mossack Fonseca.

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Art held offshore

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Pakistan's PM Leaves Country, Spanish Minister Resigns

Nawaz Sharif faces growing pressure and calls for his resignation, a Spanish minister has stepped aside, and more governments are pledging reform as fallout from the Panama Papers revelations continues.

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Panama Police Raid Mossack Fonseca As Global Fallout Continues

The search of Mossack Fonseca's Panama headquarters comes after a number of raids and official action taken in response to the Panama Papers revelations.

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Global joint investigation to be proposed at special tax meeting

Tax officials from 28 nations met in Paris to develop a strategy for collaborative action based on Panama Papers revelations.

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British PM Announces New Transparency Measures Following Panama Papers Revelations

David Cameron appeared before parliament on Monday to address concerns about his own links to offshore holdings revealed in the Panama Papers, as well as announce reform aimed at boosting transparency.

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The Art of Secrecy

Locked in the files of a Panama law firm are the answers to mysteries involving Van Goghs, Picassos, Rembrandts and other masterworks.

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Panama Papers Spark High-Level FIFA Resignation and Swiss Police Raid

Swiss police searched the office of Europe's top soccer association and a member of FIFA's ethics panel resigned following Panama Papers revelations.

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Leaked Files Offer Many Clues To Offshore Dealings by Top Chinese

Eight current and former members of the Politburo Standing Committee, the country's top decision makers, have relatives with secret offshore companies.

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Spies and Shadowy Allies Lurk in Secret With Help From Offshore Firm

Firm helps CIA operatives and other characters — real or fanciful — from the world of espionage set up offshore companies to obscure their dealings.

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Iceland Prime Minister Tenders Resignation Following Panama Papers Revelations

The prime minister of Iceland said he would resign following mass protests triggered by reports from ICIJ and partners that he had owned an offshore company in the British Virgin Islands with his wife.

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Law Firm’s Files Include Dozens of Companies and People Blacklisted by U.S. Authorities

Global law firm’s customers include suspected financiers of terrorism, nuclear weapons proliferators and gunrunners.

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How Family that Runs Azerbaijan Built an Empire of Hidden Wealth

Documents peel away three layers of secret ownership in a conglomerate and lead to gold mines and overseas real estate.

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Global Banks Team with Law Firms To Help the Wealthy Hide Assets

Leaked records show that hundreds of banks and their subsidiaries and branches registered nearly 15,600 shell companies.

About this project

The Panama Papers is an unprecedented investigation that reveals the offshore links of some of the globe’s most prominent figures.

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All Putin’s Men: Secret Records Reveal Money Network Tied to Russian Leader

Complex offshore financial deals channel money and power towards a network of people and companies linked to President Vladimir Putin.

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Giant Leak of Offshore Financial Records Exposes Global Array of Crime and Corruption

Millions of documents show heads of state, criminals and celebrities using secret hideaways in tax havens.

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Panamanian Law Firm Is Gatekeeper To Vast Flow of Murky Offshore Secrets

Files show client roster that includes drug dealers, Mafia members, corrupt politicians and tax evaders — and wrongdoing galore.

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Leak Ties Ethics Guru to Three Men Charged in FIFA Scandal

Secret documents show how deeply the world of soccer has become enmeshed in the world of offshore havens.

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Iceland’s Prime Minister Ducks Question But the Answer Catches Up with Him

He came to power after the country’s financial collapse while hiding his offshore holdings of millions in bonds from Icelandic banks.

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How the One Percenters Divorce: Offshore Intrigue Plays Hide and Seek with Millions

Firm that practices no matrimonial law nonetheless plays big role when the superrich around the globe decide to split.

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US States Under Pressure As World Pushes For Financial Transparency

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U.S. states Nevada, Wyoming and Delaware are facing growing pressure to address their lack of corporate transparency, as the United States and the international community continue to respond to fallout from the Panama Papers.

At a London anti-corruption summit on Thursday, representatives from the Cayman Islands, Bermuda and the Isle of Man warned that the “hypocrisy” of the U.S. was hurting the global push for greater financial transparency.

The summit, hosted by British Prime Minister David Cameron and attended by leaders and high-ranking officials from around the world, has drawn increased public attention after the Panama Papers investigation by ICIJ, German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung and more than 100 media partners revealed new details about how the world’s rich and powerful use and sometimes abuse secrecy jurisdictions and tax havens.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry compared the threat posed by corruption to the threat posed by terrorism, and urged attendees to work together in the fight for transparency.

“Corruption, writ large, is as much of an enemy, because it destroys nation states, as some of the extremists we are fighting or the other challenges we face,” he said.

But the U.S. came under fire from some of the smaller jurisdictions at the conference for not doing enough to combat financial opacity at home.

Cayman Islands premier Alden McLaughlin warned that if the U.S. and other larger jurisdictions didn’t comply with stricter rules being imposed on the rest of the world, then “all the shady business is going to migrate to Delaware, Wyoming, Panama, you name it.”

“It is time to put behind us the shades of hypocrisy that have been part and parcel of global discussion of this issue for years and years. So long as countries with real commitments on the world stage continue to focus on jurisdictions that are smaller in size while ignoring the larger jurisdictions, the results will be continued failure,” he said.

The U.S. states of Wyoming and Nevada both came under closer scrutiny from within the United States earlier in the week, when Sen. Ron Wyden, a Democrat from Oregon and ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, sent a letter to the secretaries of state for the two states, demanding more information about how the companies revealed in the Panama Papers are regulated.

“I have become increasingly concerned about the use of anonymous shell companies as vehicles for terrorists financing, tax evasion, and fraud targeting major government programs,” Wyden wrote.

The senator’s letters were one of a number of responses from global authorities and governments following the publication of Panama Papers data and continued investigation from ICIJ’s partners:

  • The UK, Nigeria, Kenya, France, the Netherlands and Afghanistan have agreed to set up central registers of beneficial ownership of companies that would be open to the public to search.
  • UK Prime Minister David Cameron introduced a new corporate money-laundering offence aimed at forcing companies to take more responsibility for employees’ actions.
  • The government of Japan will propose an action plan for combating graft at the next Group of Seven economic summit later in May.
  • Wealthy international investors may start to sell off their luxury London homes after new anti-corruption rules are introduced, a leading real estate agent warned.
  • Panama gave in to international pressure and joined about 100 countries in an agreement to share financial information automatically to tackle tax evasion, according to the OECD.
  • Pakistan’s government has been asked by the country’s Supreme Court to legislate a special law to empower a commission of inquiry to look into the Panama Papers revelations.
  • Mexico has widened a tax evasion probe by requiring banks to hand over names of local clients with transactions in tax havens.
  • Indonesia’s tax office announced that it would launch an investigation into 272 Indonesians whose names are mentioned in the Panama Papers.
  • A group of leading economists and influential advisors to policymakers signed an open letter to world leaders asserting that tax havens “serve no useful purpose” and calling for new global cooperation to increase financial transparency.
  • Canadian investigators are analyzing the files and have committed to lay criminal charges should any wrongdoing be found.
  • Sri Lanka has set up a panel to probe its nationals mentioned in the Panama Papers, as part of a broader bid to clean up corruption in the country.
  • Vietnam’s tax authority has formed an inspection team to look into the Vietnamese names and companies revealed in the Panama Papers data, and is also renewing focus on policing transfer pricing and tax avoidance by corporations.
  • Iceland president Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson announced he would withdraw from his re-election campaign, after it was revealed that his wife’s family had significant offshore holdings.
  • More prominent public figures have been linked to companies mentioned in the Panama Papers, including Australia’s current prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, Guatemalan politician Harold Caballeros, and British film star Emma Watson.
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