The release … of a massive leak of tax and financial records known as the Panama Papers has shone the spotlight on how the wealthy global elite evade taxes and launder money.
One of the most important tools is a “shell company” — this is a company that exists only on paper and has no office and no employees. It’s usually registered to the address of a company that provides a service setting up shell companies in a tax haven.
Hack sat down with one of Australia’s foremost experts on shell companies — Griffith University Professor Jason Sharman, the author of books on international money laundering and global tax regulation — to see how easy it was to set up your very own shell company.
Step One: Google
Google ‘offshore company’ and select from the many shell company providers.
Step two: Choose a name and tax haven
Type your proposed company name into the dialogue box and choose from a list of a dozen tax havens including the Cayman Islands, Panama, Samoa, the Seychelles and Belize.
You can even set up a shell company in the United States.