Panama Papers: Source breaks silence on Mossack Fonseca leaks
6 May 2016
- From the section Latin America & Caribbean
The anonymous source behind the leak of the Panama Papers has spoken for the first time, offering to help law authorities make prosecutions in return for immunity.
In a 1,800-word statement, “John Doe” reveals he has never worked for a spy agency or a government.
He starts the statement by citing “income equality” as a motive.
The Panama Papers have shown how some wealthy people use offshore firms to evade tax and avoid sanctions.
The papers belonged the Mossack Fonseca law firm. It denies any wrongdoing and says it is the victim of a hack.
The paper were investigated by hundreds of investigative journalists, including from the BBC, who worked in secret with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) for months.
- Who’s been caught in the scandal?
- Ten things we have learned
- Tax havens and the new politics
- How assets are hidden and taxes dodged
Although the name John Doe is used, the gender of the source has not been revealed.
In the statement, The Revolution will be Digitized, John Doe starts by saying: “Income equality is one of the defining issues of our time.”
He goes on to say: “Thousands of prosecutions could stem from the Panama Papers, if only law enforcement could access and evaluate the actual documents.
“ICIJ and its partner publications have rightly stated that they will not provide them to law enforcement agencies.
“I, however, would be willing to co-operate with law enforcement to the extent that I am able.”
But he adds: “Legitimate whistleblowers who expose unquestionable wrongdoing, whether insiders or outsiders, deserve immunity from government retribution.”
Panama Papers – tax havens of the rich and powerful exposed
- Eleven million documents held by the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca have been passed to German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung, which then shared them with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. BBC Panorama and UK newspaper The Guardian are among 107 media organisations in 76 countries which have been analysing the documents. The BBC does not know the identity of the source
- They show how the company has helped clients launder money, dodge sanctions and evade tax
- Mossack Fonseca says it has operated beyond reproach for 40 years and never been accused or charged with criminal wrongdoing
- Tricks of the trade: How assets are hidden and taxes evaded
- Panama Papers: Full coverage; follow reaction on Twitter using #PanamaPapers; in the BBC News app, follow the tag “Panama Papers”
Source: BBC World