The Tax Agency has not been slow to move a file before the revelations of the Pandora Papers. According to the Ministry of Finance, the agency will investigate the possible fiscal and criminal responsibilities derived from the information uncovered by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), which uncovers the opaque businesses of leaders and international personalities, including 600 Spanish people. The Treasury has assured that Spain “is one of the countries that is leading” the fight against “tax fraud and offshoring of profits” within the international framework and recalled that it has acted before other journalistic investigations on alleged tax evasion behaviors.
The world is trying to end tax havens, which continue to erode national finances. And more in times of lean cows. Spain is among the countries interested in putting an end to these black holes in the international tax system within the negotiations that take place in forums such as the G-20 and the OECD. This is what the Treasury has recalled before the publication of the ICIJ documents. “Tax fraud is a global problem that requires a strong response from developed countries to avoid loss of revenue, deterioration of public services and illegitimate tax competition,” says the ministry.
The Treasury has added that it already acted when in 2016 the Panama Papers, as well as “whenever it obtains indications of supposed opaque and fraudulent activities”. In this case, the actions carried out after the investigations allowed the Tax Agency to recover 142 million euros and participate in 101 judicial files by filing complaints, complaints or judicial aid work. The Treasury also maintains that it is dedicating “a specific effort to investigate large estates.” Specifically, between 2018 and 2020 it carried out 2,116 inspections of people with very large assets, liquidating 1,393 million euros.
Investigation of Pandora Papers unravel activity offshore of the world’s powerful as a result of the analysis of a leak of 11.9 million files from 14 firms specializing in operations in tax havens. The work sheds light on the massive use that public figures made of interposed companies or opaque commercial files in non-cooperative jurisdictions. In Spain, the EL PAÍS and La Sexta team has investigated 601 people of Spanish nationality and 751 companies linked to owners or companies with addresses in the country.