Leaks reveal another 150 Pakistanis own offshore firms

Leaks reveal another 150 Pakistanis own offshore firms

Islamabad, Sep 22 (IANS) After the names of 259 Pakistanis with links to offshore companies surfaced in the Panama Papers in May, a new set of leaked documents has emerged carrying the names of 150 nationals who own companies in the Bahamas.

In a statement on Wednesday, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) said that new “revelations”, revealed fresh information about offshore companies in the Bahamas, Dawn online reported.

Alongside detailed reporting, the ICIJ, German daily Suddeutsche Zeitung and other media partners are making details from the Bahamas corporate registry available to the public. This creates, for the first time, a free, online and publicly-searchable database of offshore companies set up in the island nation, the statement said.

A brief detail shared by different media sources suggested that about 150 Pakistanis have been identified as directors of nearly 70 companies, out of 175,000 firms incorporated in the Bahamas between 1959 and 2016.

Among the Pakistanis, Jibran Khan, son of former federal minister Mohammad Naseer Khan, has been named in the ‘Bahamas leaks’, while the name of former Jamaat-i-Islami senator Professor Khursheed Ahmad was also found in the fresh data as director of a registered bank in Miami.

Obaid Altaf Khanani, Samina Durrani and Karachi-based builder Mohsin Sheikhani also own offshore companies, Dawn online reported.

The explosive April 3 Panama leaks also named Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s children Maryam, Hassan and Hussain among other world leaders having offshore wealth.

The Panama Papers are a massive investigation into the secretive offshore companies owned by the world’s political and business elite.

The data came from nearly four decades of digital archives of one Panamanian law firm specialised in creating and running offshore entities, Mossack Fonseca, which says its computer records were hacked from abroad.

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