Paradise Papers reveal ‘immoral’ tax avoidance as homeless suffer

Paradise Papers reveal ‘immoral’ tax avoidance as homeless suffer

Elaborate tax dodging methods used by wealthy Irish people and companies revealed in the Paradise Papers have been condemned by Catholic charity workers who are fighting the homeless crisis.

After 13.4 million records were leaked to German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung some of Ireland’s wealthiest businessmen and celebrities were linked to valuable assets stashed in offshore holding companies.

Fr Peter McVerry dubbed the findings “absolutely appalling and scandalous”. He said the wealthy are able to afford the services needed in order to find loopholes that allow for them to retain large amounts of their assets, “in many cases it’s probably legal, but totally immoral”.

The records reveal the financial interests of hundreds of politicians worldwide, links between Russia and US president Donald Trump’s commerce secretary and even the queen of England’s offshore interests.

Offshore companies are often used by drug traffickers and money launderers as fronts, as it is almost impossible to track the owners.

Bro. Kevin Crowley of Dublin’s Capuchin Day Centre, however, thought such developments are nothing new.

“That’s always the case – the wealthy will always be exempt from various problems, as though they’re no problem for them, whereas the poor will always suffer,” he said.

Describing the exploitation and ill-treatment of tenants by landlords as a “scandal”, he said the number of people having to turn to the Capuchin Day Centre continues to rise.

“It’s a crying shame,” he added, pointing out that “until houses are provided, we’re going to have problems”.

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