In the recent weeks, news of the so-called “Panama Papers,” a leak containing documents listing the financial details of thousands of offshore companies, has been circulating around the media sphere. Big names, including Russian president Vladimir Putin, British Prime Minister David Cameron, and Argentine superstar footballer Lionel Messi, have been found among the documents, and while the ownership of offshore business entities isn’t illegal in itself, some of these entities listed are shell corporations likely involved in fraud.
Shell corporations…sound familiar?
Details from the papers are still surfacing, but it remains a fact that Kyleen Cane and her firm, Cane Clark, LLP, once did business with former Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli, now hiding in Florida as a fugitive from the Panamanian government for corruption. Martinelli, through his brokerage, Financial Pacific (which he is the primary beneficiary of), transferred $50,000 to Cane Clark, LLP on February 1st, 2010 and another $50,000 on April 23rd of that same year. Given Cane’s current charges for securities fraud and Martinelli’s history of graft, one can only imagine where those funds were going, but the transfer in itself was illegal, as Panama law prohibits sending money to unidentified third parties.
The question remains: is there a deeper connection to other names and entities in the Panama Papers? We shall find out when the papers are released in early May.
As for Cane’s case, prosecutors are currently undergoing re-discovery (against Cane’s wishes) and combing through over 44,000 documents on her smartphone for evidence, which could be as damning as anything found in the Panama Papers.20160311-letter-re-discovery-123111698407