Featured BVI

Shadowy operators power Duterte’s offshore gaming boom

It has created 470,000 jobs. It contributes over $11 billion to the economy. It has even sparked a diplomatic clash with China. The strange thing is, nobody is sure who fully owns it. It’s not as though the Philippine offshore gaming operators who are transforming Manila, known collectively as POGOs,… Read More

Bank of Ireland accounts ‘used to launder €273m in OneCoin scam’

American prosecutors allege that the US lawyer Mark Scott laundered €273m in gains from the OneCoin global cryptocurrency scam via Bank of Ireland accounts. Four current and former bank executives — including Diane Sands, Bank of Ireland’s head of anti-money laundering — have been called to testify in the US… Read More

Going, going, gone: African dictators losing luxury lifestyle amid money laundering crackdown

Judging by the fleet of supercars parked in the grounds of Geneva’s Bonmont Golf and Country Club last Sunday, Teodorin Obiang was not overly fussed by the size of his carbon footprint. There were 25 in total, representatives of every luxury model conceivable, from Aston Martin to Bugatti and Ferrari,… Read More
1st October 2019
1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) lost a total of US$1.367 billion (RM5.72 billion) in deposits to a fake British Virgin Islands company named Aabar Investments PJS Limited while raising funds in two quick-fire deals handled by businessman Low Taek Low’s associates, 1MDB’s former CEO told the court yesterday. Datuk Shahrol Azral… Read More
1st August 2019
The signs were there. Jahangir Hajiyev, chairman of the biggest bank in Azerbaijan, and his wife, Zamira, appeared to be living on dirty money. Between 2003 and 2015, the couple spent a fortune in the U.K. They dished out 11.5 million pounds ($14.3 million) for a townhouse in the ritzy… Read More
30th July 2019
John Christensen called Jersey home. A native of the scenic isle off England’s southern coast, he was a government economist with a hillside villa that had views of France. “I was set,” Christensen said last month in an interview at a London cafe. “We had a pretty good lifestyle and… Read More
24th January 2019
A solicitor, who was also a money laundering reporting officer (MLRO), has been fined £45,000 for failing to conduct anti-money laundering checks for wealthy clients believed to be linked to the Panama Papers scandal. Khalid Mohammed Sharif, a partner at London-based Child & Child, was involved in the law firm’s… Read More
27th August 2018
The UK’s parliamentary research department has published a paper on registers of beneficial ownership. The study outlines the beneficial ownership structure in the UK, and also looks at issues around its Overseas Territories. It explains that the UK has registers of beneficial ownership for three different types of assets: companies,… Read More
3rd May 2018
The British Virgin Islands has hit out at the United Kingdom’s plans for its Overseas Territories to publish publicly accessible registers naming the beneficial – or real – owners of firms, saying it already provides the UK with such information and the scheme could have a negative impact on its… Read More
2nd May 2018
Britain’s government agreed on Tuesday to order its overseas territories to make secretive company ownership information public to try to tackle corruption and tax avoidance. Overseas territories and crown dependencies have come under increasing pressure to reveal who is behind anonymously owned companies, with campaign groups saying such secrecy aids… Read More
13th March 2018
The European Council has added three states to the Annex 1 list of non-cooperative jurisdictions, dubbed the EU tax blacklist, saying they have failed to make commitments at ‘a high political level’ to address issues raised. The Bahamas, Saint Kitts and Nevis and the US Virgin Islands were added on… Read More
13th February 2018
A quarter of property in England and Wales owned by overseas firms is held by entities registered in the British Virgin Islands, BBC analysis has found. The Caribbean archipelago is the official home of companies that own 23,000 properties – more than any other country. They are owned by 11,700… Read More
6th November 2017
By Francesco Guarascio, REUTERS European Union states will on Tuesday discuss plans for a tax havens’ blacklist, officials said, in a bid to tackle offshore tax avoidance after leaked documents revealed investments by wealthy individuals and institutions around the globe. The subject’s inclusion on the monthly meeting’s agenda of EU… Read More