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Kremlin labels Panama Papers report as "stolen documents"

May 10, 12:18 UTC+3
The Panama Papers Report contains extracts from 11.5 million documents with data on the owners of offshore companies, including information on more than 2,000 Russians
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Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov

© Mikhail Metzel/TASS

SOCHI, May 10. /TASS/. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Tuesday referred to the Panama Papers report as "stolen documents."

"The Panama Papers are stolen documents. Perhaps, we need to call things by their proper names," he told journalists.

According to the official, the official deoffshorization policy of Russia’s officials is not tied with the Panama Papers report.

"I would not try to link the deoffshorization policy to ‘Panama papers’, which are absolutely different things," he said when asked to comment on how the campaign of the Russian officials on tackling money withdrawal from the country via offshore schemes associates with media reports on the data of the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca, including information on more than 2,000 owners of offshore companies from Russia

According to Peskov, offshore companies themselves are not illegal, "no one has banned offshores", but "non-payment of taxes or an attempt to evade taxes in your country are illegal whereas offshores themselves do not fall under the category of illegal things."

The Washington-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) published on April 3 extracts from 11.5 million documents with data on the owners of offshore companies, including information on more than 2,000 Russians. The report dubbed the Panama Papers is based on information leaks from the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca, which provides assistance in registering companies in offshore zones. Authors of the investigation claim that these operations could be tied to associates of Russian President Vladimir Putin, but the Russian leader’s name is not actually mentioned in the files.

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