Donald Trump has been named in the Pandora Papers for his ties to a Panamanian hotel project, but the leaked files “reveal no significant information” about his dealings, according to a report.
The dumping of 12 million financial records has set the elites from King Abdullah of Jordan to the alleged mistress of Russian President Vladimir Putin on fire.
The former US president is named for his ‘involvement in a hotel project in Panama’, according to The Washington Post.
“But the Pandora documents do not appear to reveal any significant new information about his finances,” the report says.
Trump’s name previously appeared in connection with the Trump Ocean Club International Hotel and Tower in the 2016 Panama Papers leak.
It’s not clear if this gleaming, sail-shaped complex towering over Panama City’s bay is the same project discussed in the Pandora Papers.
Trump put his name to the development and would earn up to $75 million from it, according to a bond prospectus.
He exercised no management control over the structure and was not directly required by law to conduct due diligence on other involved parties.
Former US President Donald Trump speaks at a meeting on September 25, 2021 in Perry, Georgia
Trump’s name previously appeared in connection with the Trump Ocean Club International Hotel and Tower in the 2016 Panama Papers leak
It reflects a business model that Trump has used around the world, giving his name to hotels and apartment complexes, while not operating them himself.
The Pandora Papers are being investigated by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), but this coterie has not published the treasure in full, meaning more details about Trump’s involvement are yet to be reported.
Aside from Trump’s brief mention in the new leak, it has been noted that while the world’s richest are swarmed from London to Hong Kong, heavyweights in the United States are not mentioned.
Financial Secrecy Laws in South Dakota Have Made the State THE Place for Foreigners Looking to Hide Millions in Assets
The state of South Dakota has joined well-known offshore tax havens, including the British Virgin Islands, Seychelles, Hong Kong and Belize, quadrupling trusts in South Dakota to $360 billion in a decade.
The Papers reveal how one of the largest trust companies in the state has confirmed it has clients spanning 54 countries and 47 states with more than 100 billionaires.
State politicians have continued to pass legislation that provides even greater protections and benefits to the clients of such trusts.
The US has continued to refuse to participate in a 2014 agreement backed by the Cayman Islands and Luxembourg requiring US financial institutions to share information they have about foreigners’ assets.
‘South Dakota now competes in financial secrecy with notoriously opaque jurisdictions in Europe and the Caribbean’ The Washington Post stated.
In addition, the legislation permitting such secrecy has been drafted by insiders working in the trust industry.
State laws provide both protection and secrecy while keeping the money within the US
Normally, the government would tax all interest on an account, but in South Dakota, assets are protected from civil claims such as a divorce or legal process. They are not protected from criminal investigation.
Nevertheless, because South Dakota has no income, estate, or capital gains tax, the finances there are effectively kept out of the reach of the US government.
Documents of the pandora papers, ICIJ and mail managed to identify nearly 30 US-based trusts associated with foreigners whose companies were accused of misconduct and human rights abuses…all now based in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
Billionaires, including Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, are missing from the Pandora Papers.
Financial experts say this is because the generous tax rates they pay domestically mean there is little incentive to seek foreign tax havens.
Others speculate that they may also be using various refuges, such as the Cayman Islands, which were not featured in the papers.
But if Americans aren’t on the list, the United States itself isn’t.
South Dakota, in particular, has become a new hub for opaque financial transactions, rivaling those of the British Virgin Islands and Switzerland.
Trust in the state has quadrupled in a decade to $360 billion thanks to laws protecting assets from civil claims such as divorce.
The Pandora Papers describe more than 29,000 offshore accounts – double the number listed in the Panama Papers – linked to officials in 91 countries and territories.
The report showed how world leaders, powerful politicians, billionaires, celebrities, religious leaders and drug dealers have hidden their investments in mansions, exclusive beachfront properties, yachts and other assets over the past quarter-century.
According to the report, many of the accounts are designed to evade taxes and hide assets for other suspicious reasons.
The report listed 130 alleged billionaires as account holders, but did not include any of America’s wealthiest individuals.
Financial analysts speculate that America’s uber-rich — like Bezos, Buffet, Musk and Gates — are less likely to use offshore havens because of the low tax rates they pay.
According to a Forbes report published in June found the 25 richest Americans paid a “real tax rate” of 3.4 percent on $401 billion in capital appreciation between 2014 and 2018.
Bezos reportedly paid a real tax rate of 0.98 percent, while Buffet and Musk paid 0.10 percent and 3.27 percent, respectively.
Gates’s actual tax rate was not readily available, but in 2018 he admitted to paying more tax.
“I have to pay higher taxes … I’ve paid more taxes, over $10 billion, than anyone else, but the government should force people in my position to pay significantly higher taxes,” Gates said. CNN at the time.
In addition, experts analyzing the Pandora Papers claim that the US asset managers may have used other companies or foreign accounts in different jurisdictions to hide their money.
Amazon owner Jeff Bezos (left), America’s rich man and legendary investor Warren Buffet, does not appear on the lists
America’s richest billionaires, including Bill Gates (left) and Elon Musk, are not featured in the Panama Papers.
The Pandora Papers only contain data from 14 financial services companies that: active in Switzerland, Singapore, Cyprus, Belize and the British Virgin Islands.
It is possible that additional companies are holding money from the Americans.
Meanwhile, experts argue that the Pandora Papers leak should raise concern as financial foreclosure can affect citizens for several generations by exacerbating wealth disparities and crimes such as drug trafficking, ransomware attacks, arms trafficking and more.
“The offshore financial system is a problem that every law-abiding person around the world should face,” former FBI officer Sherine Ebadi told the paper.
“These systems don’t just allow tax fraudsters to evade their fair share. They undermine the fabric of a good society.’