Jordan’s King Abdullah II is among dozens of world leaders who have hidden millions of dollars in offshore tax havens and secretly bought luxury homes, according to an investigation released Sunday.
The so-called Pandora Papers investigation is based on the leak of 11.9 million documents from 14 global financial services involving about 600 journalists.
The document shows how King Abdullah II built a network of offshore companies and tax havens to build a িয়ন 100 million property empire from Malibu, California to Washington, DC and London.
According to the investigation: “Three beach palaces in Malibu [were] The King of Jordan bought through three offshore companies for three million dollars a few years after Jordanians filled the streets during the Arab Spring in protest of unemployment and corruption.
Abdullah, 59, owns three luxury apartments in a complex in Washington DC, a beautiful view of the Potomac River and a house in Ascot, one of the most expensive cities in England, and a multi-million dollar apartment in central London. .
“Other monarchies in the Middle East, such as Saudi Arabia, need to allow a king to show off his wealth,” Jordan said.
“If the king of Jordan shows his wealth more openly, it will not only create animosity towards his people, it will stop Western donors who have given him money.”
King Abdullah’s lawyers were quoted as saying that all property was purchased with private assets and that it was common practice for high-ranking individuals to purchase property through offshore companies for privacy and security reasons.
The law firm, DLA Piper, which represents the royal family, said:
“[Abdullah] Never misused public money or used any of the proceeds of aid or assistance for public use. ”
336 High level politicians
The document, analyzed by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), shows about five current and former leaders – facing allegations ranging from corruption to money laundering and global tax evasion.
The documents also show that Czech Prime Minister Andrzej Babis – facing an election later this week – has failed to announce an offshore investment company used to buy a টো 22 million chat in the south of France.
In total, ICIJ has found connections between about 1,000 companies in the offshore shelter and 336 high-level politicians and government officials, including leaders of the country, cabinet ministers, ambassadors and others.
More than two-thirds of the companies were established in the British Virgin Islands.
In most countries, the ICIJ has insisted that it is not illegal to have offshore assets or use shell companies to do business across national borders.
But such revelations are no less embarrassing for leaders who may have been campaigning publicly against corruption, or at home.
“The new data leak will definitely be a wake-up call,” said Seven Ziegold, a Green Party lawmaker in the European Parliament. “Global tax evasion exacerbates global inequality. We need to expand and sharpen the countermeasures now. ”
Aliyev and Kenyatta on the list
Other manifestations of the ICIJ investigation include:
- The family and associates of Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev have been accused of being secretly involved in a multi-billion dollar property deal in Britain.
- Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and six members of his family have been accused of secretly having offshore company networks.
- Members of Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan’s inner circle, including cabinet ministers and their families, secretly own companies and trusts that own millions of dollars.
- Russian President Vladimir Putin is not directly named in the files, but he is linked to secret assets in Monaco through associates.
Pandora Papers is a series of recent ICIJ leaks to the media in 2014 via Lex Leaks, followed by the Panama Papers, Paradise Papers and Finsen.
The documents behind the latest investigation were obtained from financial services companies, including the British Virgin Islands, Panama, Belize, Cyprus, the United Arab Emirates, Singapore and Switzerland.
The latest bomb is more extensive than the Panama Papers, being ported through about 3 terabytes of data – equivalent to about 750,000 photos on a smartphone – doing business in 38 different regions of the world from 14 different service providers.
The records date back to the 1970s, but most files date from 1996 to 2020.