An year after startling revelations in Panama leaks, a treasure trove of documents has unearthed hidden wealth of a large number of powerful people around the world.
The new leak named paradise papers has shaken the world capitals with 13.4 million documents, calling into question the shady business connection of US President Donald Trump’s billionaire commerce Secretary with Russian companies, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, secret investment of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Chief Fundraiser, offshore investment of the queen of England, Queen of Jordan, and 120 other politicians from across the world.
Among them also included Pakistan’s former finance and Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz.
According to Paradise Papers, Former Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz was found linked with two trusts.
The one set up by the Citibank in Bahamas in which he acted as director was Cititrust limited. This was formed when he was executive in that bank.
Another one he himself set up: Antarctic trust. Rukhsana Aziz, his wife and three children: Abid Aziz, Maha Aziz, Lubana Khan, and Tanya Khan (granddaughter) are its beneficiaries. Shortly before becoming Finance Minister, he set up this trust in Delaware (America) which was being managed from Bermuda.
It was neither declared during his stint as Finance Minister nor as Prime Minister.
The trust was categorized among the “high risk” clients being dealt by the appleby law firm.
Speaking through his attorney in New York, Shaukat Aziz said he didn’t have to declare in Pakistan because he was the settlor of trust.
Asked whether his wife or children declare, his attorney said they didn’t have to declare because they were beneficiaries, not the beneficial owners.
he claimed no law was violated.
Names of 714 Indians also appear in the leaks. Renowned singers Madonna and bono are also named.
The record of Pakistanis was mostly found in Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Malta and other such jurisdictions. As many as 135 Pakistani individuals with accounts in a Swiss bank were also identified which they either created in their own name or through offshore companies.