FROM TODAY’S EDITION OF THE SUNDAY TIMES:-
SOME of Britain’s best known charities are being used by offshore trusts to shelter hundreds of millions of pounds from the tax authorities. A cache of 2.5m leaked documents from one of the world’s biggest tax havens reveals that rich investors are naming charities as the main beneficiaries of offshore trusts that in reality have been created to benefit themselves. By naming charities as the purported beneficiaries of a trust, the real owners can avoid scrutiny by the tax authorities. Cancer Research UK, the NSPCC, the National Trust, Greenpeace and Amnesty International are among organisations whose names have been used by trusts in the British Virgin Islands (BVI), a British overseas territory, and the Cook Islands in the Pacific. The charities say they were never told of the existence of these trusts and have not received any money.
The revelation in today’s edition of the Sunday Times that some of wealthiest are using charities as a device for saving themselves taxation is totally disgusting and abhorrent. It seems that charities are named as the beneficiaries of a trust which effectively hides the identity of the real owner; the charities do not, it appears, garner any benefit whatsoever whilst the real owner avoids massive amounts of taxation.