British Home Secretary Amber Rudd was the director of two offshore companies based in the Bahamas before becoming involved in politics.
Rudd, a senior minister in Theresa May’s cabinet, is one of many politicians whose name appears among 1.3 million documents relating to offshore companies which operate or have operated in international tax havens.
The millions of files were obtained by German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung and shared with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) — the organisation that published the Panama Papers in May.
The latest data dump includes details of over 175,000 Bahamian companies registered between 1990 and 2016. The Bahamas, a country in the Caribbean, was included in a list of “uncooperative” tax havens published by the EU last year.
The MP for Hastings and Rye was director of firms Advanced Asset Allocation Fund and Advanced Asset Allocation Management between 1998 and 2000. There is no evidence to prove Rudd had used her position avoid tax, though.
The biggest headline to come out of the Panama Papers dump earlier this year was that former prime minister David Cameron profited from an offshore fund set by his father in the Bahamas, which never paid tax in the UK.
The former MP for Witney initially denied profiting from Blairmore Holdings. However, he later admitted making around £32,500 ($42,160) from selling shares in the fund in 2010. This prompted Cameron to publish his tax details after protesters gathered outside Downing Street and called for his resignation.
At the time, Rudd defended the then-Tory leader. Appearing on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, she said Cameron had “said all there is to be said” about his tax returns. She added that “international transparency on tax matters is essential” but failed to mention her past involvement with an offshore firm.
The Home Secretary’s spokesperson told the Guardian newspaper: “It is a matter of public record that Amber had a career in business before entering politics.”
Alistair Buchanan, Rudd’s former business associate who marketed the fund to investors, said the fund was set up in the Bahamas for regulatory reasons and the decision had nothing to do with tax avoidance. “You could not set up those funds in England at that time, now you can,” he said.
Rudd was not immediately available for comment.
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