Queen’s property invested $13 million in offshore tax havens

How rich is the Queen?

Leaked paperwork printed on Sunday recommend that the non-public property of Queen Elizabeth II invested in offshore funds.

Revelations from the leak, which has been dubbed the Paradise Papers, have been reported by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) and retailers together with The New York Times.

In Britain, the BBC mentioned it had seen paperwork that present the Duchy of Lancaster, which offers the Queen with an revenue, had invested £10 million ($13.1 million) into funds within the Cayman Islands and Bermuda.

The paperwork haven’t been reviewed by CNN.

The Queen has not been accused of any wrongdoing. But the investments are doubtlessly embarrbading for a royal household that carefully guards its popularity.

“We operate a number of investments and a few of these are with overseas funds. All of our investments are fully audited and legitimate,” the Duchy of Lancaster mentioned in an announcement.

The Duchy added that the Queen, who’s formally exempt from U.Okay. tax legal guidelines, “voluntarily pays tax” on revenue she receives from the property.

The £519 million ($680 million) Duchy, which offers the Queen with an revenue to cowl official bills, says it invests primarily in industrial, agricultural and residential properties.

In the newest fiscal yr, the Duchy generated £19.2 million ($25 million) in internet revenue in keeping with its web site.

Related: What you could know in regards to the Paradise Papers

One of the Duchy’s offshore investments has generated some controversy.

The BBC reported that the Duchy invested $7.5 million in Dover Street VI Cayman Fund LP in 2005. The fund, which invested in medical and tech corporations, later put cash into U.Okay. retailer BrightHouse.

The Duchy mentioned its funding within the firm is value £three,208 ($four,200).

BrightHouse, which gave clients credit score so they might purchase its dwelling furnishings and home equipment, was later pressured to compensate customers after the U.Okay.’s Financial Conduct Authority discovered it was not a accountable lender.

“We sincerely apologize to those customers who were affected,” the corporate mentioned in October. “We’re absolutely determined that this doesn’t happen again and have made significant improvements over the last 18 months.”

The Duchy mentioned in an announcement that the funding in BrightHouse was made “through a third party,” and equates to simply zero.0006% of the Duchy’s worth.

The ICIJ famous in its report that “there are legitimate uses for offshore companies and trusts,” and it was not suggesting that any individuals or corporations it named both broke the legislation or acted improperly.

David Pitt Watson, an government fellow on the London Business School who focuses on accountable investments, mentioned he “very much” doubts that the Queen knew the place her cash was invested.

Instead, she’s like “so many others who have a pension, or an investment account,” he mentioned. “We just don’t know what is being done with it.”

The Paradise Papers reporting is much like the Panama Papers, which in 2016 uncovered circumstances involving celebrities and enterprise executives who reportedly moved giant chunks of their wealth into offshore tax havens.

The new undertaking, which is predicated on greater than 13.four million paperwork dated from 1950 to 2016, covers a lot of world companies and distinguished individuals and their use of offshore accounts.

— Max Foster contributed reporting.

CNNMoney (London) First printed November 6, 2017: 11:08 AM ET




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