Panana Papers database now accessible to you

Panana Papers database now accessible to you

Who's going to be embarrassed today? By now, netizens – and Thai tax officials – have certainly discovered you can click on "all countries", "Thailand" in the newly released Panama Papers database and get a wealth of information.

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Panama Papers database on shell companies goes online

Washington, AFP – The public gained its first access to the Panama Papers records of over 200,000 secret offshore companies Monday when the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists put a searchable database up online.

The database, built on just a portion of the 11.5 million documents leaked from the Panama law firm Mossack Fonseca, reveals more than 360,000 names of individuals and companies behind the anonymous shell firms, the ICIJ said.

It reveals the full extent to which the world's wealthy, alongside criminals, create such nominee companies to stash and transfer assets out of sight of the law and tax officials.

Reports already published in April based on the explosive dossier linked some of the world's most powerful leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, British Prime Minister David Cameron and others to unreported offshore companies.

Until now access to the total cache of documents, originally provided by a mysterious "John Doe", was restricted to the ICIJ and a select group of international media.

The ICIJ said Monday it is publishing some of the information catalogued in a database "in the public interest," as a global movement against tax evasion and the secrecy accorded the beneficial owners of anonymous shell companies gains force.

The database "allows users to explore the networks of companies and people that used – and sometimes abused – the secrecy of offshore locales with the help of Mossack Fonseca and other intermediaries," the ICIJ said.

It said it was not making available raw records online, nor was it putting all the information from the records out, in part to prevent access to bank account details and personal data of those mentioned.

The database can be searched by individual and company name and address, and shows links between those in the database.

But it gives no information – beyond their name – on the full identities of those behind the companies, nor of the underlying assets linked to the accounts.

Even so, the individuals associated with the firms plainly come from all four corners of the globe. Many of the names are Chinese, Middle Eastern, Latin American and European.

A view of the facade of the building where Panama-based Mossack Fonseca law firm offices are located in Panama City, on May 9, 2016. The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) has released the documents in a searchable database to the public. / AFP PHOTO / RODRIGO ARANGUA

The data came from nearly four decades of digital archives of Mossack Fonseca, one of the leading firms in the world for creating secret companies.

It is not known how the documents came to light; Mossack Fonseca says its computer records were hacked from abroad.

Mossack Fonseca sought a court order last week to prevent the ICIJ from putting the data online, arguing it would violate attorney-client privilege.

But the ICIJ said it is important the public be able to look up information on any offshore company.

"We think that information about who owns the company should be public and transparent," Marina Walker Guevara, deputy director of the ICIJ, told CNN.

She stressed, however, that "this is not disclosing private information en masse."

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Vocabulary

  • abroad: in or to a foreign country - ในต่างประเทศ
  • abuse: to use or treat someone or something wrongly or badly, especially in a way that is to your own advantage - ใช้ในทางที่ผิด
  • access: having the opportunity to have or use something - มีโอกาสในการใช้
  • alongside: at the side of, side by side, parallel to - ข้างๆ, อยู่ถัดไป,อยู่ข้าง
  • anonymous: not named - ไม่ระบุชื่อ
  • archive: a collection or historical records or documents - ข้อมูลที่ได้มีการบันทึกไว้
  • argue: to give reasons why you think that something is right/wrong, true/not true, etc, especially to persuade people that you are right - ห้เหตุผล, อ้างเหตุผล
  • assets: things owned by a person, company etc., particularly money and property - ทรัพย์สิน
  • associated with: connected with in some way - ที่เชื่อมโยงกัน
  • attorney: a lawyer - ทนาย
  • beneficial owner (noun): a person/group who actually owns something even though it is registered under another name -
  • cache: a quantity of things that have been hidden or stored, especially weapons - สิ่งที่ซ่อนไว้
  • came to light (idiom): was/were revealed; was/were made known - ถูกเปิดเผยออกมา
  • catalogue (verb): to arrange a list of things in order in a catalogue; to record something in a catalogue - บันทึกในบัญชีรายชื่อ
  • client: a customer or someone who receives services of a lawyer - ลูกความ
  • consortium: an organization of several businesses or banks joining together as a group for a shared purpose - สมาคม,สหภาพ,ห้างหุ้นส่วน,สมาคมนายธนาคาร
  • court: the place where legal trials take place and where crimes, etc. are judged - ศาล
  • criminal: someone who has committed a crime, i.e., someone who has carried out an illegal activity or action - ผู้ที่ทำผิดกฎหมาย
  • data: facts or information, especially when examined and used to find out things or to make decisions - ข้อมูล, ตัวเลข, สถิติ
  • database: a large amount of information stored in a computer in an organised way - ฐานข้อมูล
  • decades: periods of ten years - เป็นสิบๆปี
  • deputy: a person whose rank is immediately below that of the leader of an organisation - รอง
  • details: small facts or pieces of information relating to a situation - รายละเอียด
  • director: one of a group of senior managers who run a company - กรรมการบริษัท
  • disclose: to make known to the public - เปิดเผยต่อสาธารณะ
  • document: a paper or set of papers with written or printed information, especially of an official type  - เอกสาร
  • dossier (noun): a collection of documents that contain information about a person, an event or a subject - เอกสารเรื่องราวเดียวกันที่เก็บรวมกัน
  • en masse: all together as a group - เป็นกลุ่ม,ด้วยกันทั้งหมด
  • explore: to examine something completely or carefully in order to find out more about it - สำรวจ,ตรวจ
  • explosive (adj): in a way that is likely to strong feelings of anger or hatred - ซึ่งสามารถระเบิดได้, รุนแรง
  • extent: size; the degree to which something happens or is likely to happen - ขนาด ขอบเขต
  • façade: the front of a building, especially one that is large or impressive - ด้านหน้าของตึกที่แสดงรายละเอียดของสถาปัตยกรรม, ส่วนหน้าของอาคาร
  • firm: a business or company - บริษัท
  • gain force (verb): to get stronger -
  • global: throughout the world - ทั่วโลก
  • globe (noun): the world, Earth, or a similar round-shaped planet - โลก
  • hack: to secretly find a way of looking at and/or changing information on somebody else's computer system without permission - เจาะเข้าโปรแกรมคอมพิวเตอร์อย่างผิดกฎหมาย
  • identity: who or what somebody/something is - ชื่อ เอกลักษณ์
  • individual: a person considered separately rather than as part of a group - บุคคล
  • interest: an advantage or benefit to someone or something - ผลประโยชน์
  • intermediary (noun): a person or an organisation that helps other people or organisations to make an agreement by being a means of communication between them; someone who talks to each of the people or groups involved in something, usually passing information from one to the other or trying to persuade them to agree with each other - สื่อกลาง, ตัวกลาง, คนกลาง
  • investigative: involving the process of trying to find out all the details or facts about something in order to discover who or what caused it or how it happened - เกี่ยวกับการสืบสวน, เกี่ยวกับการตรวจสอบหาความจริง
  • John Doe (noun): a name used for a person whose name is not known or is kept secret, especially in a court of law; an average man - ชื่อที่ใช้สำหรับคนที่มีชื่อไม่เป็นที่รู้จักหรือที่เป็นความลับ
  • journalist: a person who writes news stories or articles for a newspaper or magazine or broadcasts them on radio or television - ผู้สื่อข่าว
  • leak (verb): to tell private or secret information to journalists or to the public; to release secret or private information, photos, etc. without permission - ทำให้รู้ความลับ, เปิดเผย
  • link: a connection - ความเชื่อมโยงกัน
  • linked: connected - เชื่อมโยง เกี่ยวกับ
  • locale: the place where something happens - สถานที่
  • located: where something is - ตั้งอยู่
  • media: radio, television, newspaper, the Internet, considered as a group - สื่อ
  • movement: a group of people who share the same aim and work together to achieve it - การเคลื่อนไหวเพื่อวัตถุประสงค์อย่างใดอย่างหนึ่ง
  • mysterious: not explained or understood; full of secrets - ลึกลับ, น่าพิศวง, น่าประหลาด
  • network: a large system of connected parts, organisations, people, etc. - เครือข่าย
  • nominee: a legal arrangement whereby investments are held by a a person or company on behalf of the real owner - ผู้รับถือหุ้นให้บุคคลอื่นที่ไม่ต้องการจะเปิดเผยตัวตน
  • officials: people who have the power to make decisions or enforce the law - เจ้าหน้าที่ผู้มีอำนาจ
  • offshore (adj): kept or located in another country - นอกประเทศ
  • personal: your own; not belonging to or connected with anyone else - เป็นส่วนตัว
  • plainly (adv): clearly; in a way that is easy to see, hear, understand or believe - อย่างชัดแจ้ง
  • portion: a part of something - ส่วน
  • prevent (verb): to stop somebody from doing something; to stop something from happening - ขัดขวาง, ป้องกัน, กัน, กีดขวาง
  • privilege: a special benefit that is available only to a particular person or group - เอกสิทธิ์
  • publish: to make something available to the public through books, magazines, the Internet, etc. - เผยแพร่, จัดพิมพ์
  • raw: in its natural state; not yet changed, used or made into something else - ดิบ
  • restricted: intended only for people who have been given special permission - ที่จำกัด
  • reveal: to show or let something become known - เปิดเผย
  • searchable (adj): (of a computer database or network) having information organized in such a way that it can be searched for using a computer - ซึ่งค้นหาได้
  • secrecy (noun): the fact of making sure that nothing is known about something; the state of being secret - ความลับ, การปิดบัง
  • selected (adj.): specially chosen - ถูกคัดเลือก
  • shell company: a company that has no assets or operations of its own, but is used by its owners to conduct specific business dealings or maintain control of other companies -
  • sought (past tense of seek): tried to get/do something; asked for something - พยายามได้, พยายามได้มา
  • stash: to hide or store a large amount of something - ซ่อนไว้, เก็บไว้
  • stress: to emphasise something such as an idea, fact or detail; to explain why something is important - เน้น
  • tax: money that you have to pay to the government so that it can pay for public services - ภาษี
  • tax evasion: deliberately not paying the taxes you owe - การหนีภาษี
  • the public: people in general - ประชาชน, สาธารณชน, มหาชน
  • transfer: to move someone or something from one place, vehicle, person or group to another - ย้าย
  • transparent: not keeping anything secret; open - โปร่งใส
  • underlying (adj): important in a situation but not always easily noticed or stated clearly; existing under the surface of something else - ที่สำคัญและซ่อนอยู่, ที่อยู่ในตำแหน่งต่ำกว่า
  • violate: to do something that is against a law, rule or agreement - ฝ่าฝืน, ละเมิด
  • wealthy: having a large amount of money, land, and other valuable things   - ที่มั่งคั่ง ร่ำรวย
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