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Two former Hong Kong leaders named in Pandora Papers leak | Politics Information

Two former leaders of Hong Kong have been named within the Pandora Papers leak, probably the most intensive world information drop detailing secretive monetary dealings by the world’s wealthiest those who purpose to hide their belongings.

Leung Chun-ying, or CY Leung, reportedly didn’t declare his earnings from the sale of shares of a Japanese firm whereas nonetheless serving because the Chinese language territory’s chief govt. Tung Chee-hwa, a billionaire, allegedly arrange offshore corporations after he retired from workplace.

CY Leung was Hong Kong’s chief between 2012 and 2017, whereas Tung was town’s first chief govt after Hong Kong’s handover to China in 1997. He remained in cost till 2005.

Each males at the moment are serving as senior members of an advisory committee for the Chinese language authorities and there are experiences that CY Leung might search a political comeback because the time period of the present Hong Kong chief govt, Carrie Lam, involves an finish.

The landmark investigation concerned 600 journalists from 150 information organisations in 117 international locations, sorting by way of about 11.9 million recordsdata from greater than a dozen monetary establishments. It’s estimated that the world leaders in enterprise and politics are linked to offshore wealth amounting to trillions of {dollars}.

The opening of offshore accounts isn’t prohibited by regulation. But when the aim of these accounts is to keep away from taxes of their respective international locations, then that may very well be deemed unlawful.

Apart from CY Leung and Tung, some 35 present and former world leaders, together with the Russian President Vladimir Putin and King Abdullah II of Jordan, have been additionally named.

In response to the Worldwide Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), CY Leung did not declare the sale in 2015 of an estimated 2.3m Hong Kong {dollars} ($295,000) price of shares of the corporate DTZ Japan Ltd. ICIJ collaborated with Hong Kong’s Stand Information within the investigation.

Stand Information mentioned CY Leung reportedly held 30 % of shares within the firm by way of two offshore corporations.

The report additionally mentioned that even after he took workplace as Hong Kong’s chief govt on July 1, 2012, Leung continued to function director of three offshore corporations and solely give up his posts in August that very same 12 months.

Leung by no means publicly acknowledged his position and duties within the three corporations, in response to the report.

Leung livid

Leung characterised the Stand Information report as deceptive and warned towards fanning the “flames of irresponsible journalism” in a sequence of posts on social media.

Writing on Fb, he mentioned he was solely required to declare shares he owned immediately owned, and never these in subsidiaries of corporations.

“Possession and transactions of share in subsidiaries needn’t be declared,” he mentioned, including that he didn’t train decision-making rights within the corporations talked about, together with DTZ Japan.

He additionally justified his continued presence as director of the three corporations into his time period as Hong Kong chief, saying there have been totally different procedures in contracts, and in some situations, resignations didn’t take impact instantly.

“I activated all resignation procedures earlier than I took workplace because the chief govt,” he mentioned.

Leung reacted angrily to the Pandora Papers leak and warned towards fanning the  ‘flames of irresponsible journalism’ following the expose of his enterprise transactions [File: Anthony Wallace/AFP]

Leung got here underneath investigation following allegations revealed within the Sydney Morning Herald in 2014 that he had acquired 50m Hong Kong {dollars} ($6.4m) in reference to bidding for property agency DTZ that he didn’t declare.

The report mentioned that Leung was paid the sum to cease him from taking a place with DTZ’s competitor. The criticism towards him was dropped in 2018, with the justice division citing inadequate proof.

He was additionally investigated for alleged potential battle of curiosity and tax evasion, however these circumstances have been dropped in 2020.

The Stand Information report additionally mentioned that each CY Leung and Tung have been shoppers of Trident Belief, a world firm that manages trusts and funds. The paper alleged each males used intermediaries to register offshore accounts and shell corporations all over the world for themselves and members of the family to shelter them from taxes.

In the meantime, Tung additionally reportedly arrange not less than seven offshore corporations after he left workplace. Utilizing a kind of corporations, an account was opened with HSBC with an estimated $1m (7.8m Hong Kong {dollars}) in belongings.

Tung and his members of the family additionally opened as much as 72 offshore firm accounts.

In response to Forbes Journal, which charts the fortunes of the world’s richest folks, Tung’s wealth is estimated at $2.6bn.

Tung and his household have but to answer the report.


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