Panama Papers Whistleblower Speaks Out: “Shell Companies are Putin’s Best Friend”

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The anonymous whistleblower behind the bombshell leak known as the Panama Papers has emerged anew to warn how offshore companies are enabling Russia’s war machine.
John Doe issued a manifesto weeks after the publication of the Panama Papers in 2016, decrying global inequality and calling on governments to do more to curb the use of offshore companies that hide fortunes of the rich and often of the corrupt.

The reporting, which was rewarded with a Pulitzer Prize, led the leaders of Iceland and Pakistan to resign and sparked global protests.

Governments have since recovered at least $1.3 billion in tax revenues as a result, but John Doe is concerned that rising nationalistic and authoritarian governments are looking to overturn advances in transparency. The interview comes also as the U.S. Congress debates legislation that would make it harder to hide behind shell companies in the United States.