About 850 Israeli businessmen and some 600 Israeli companies are listed as having offshore accounts in the documents known as Panama Papers leaked from unknowen Panamanian law firm, Mossack Fonseca, that specializes in offshore accounts.
The 11.5 million documents was published on Sunday, following a year-long investigation of their contents led by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and the German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung.
According to Haaretz the Israeli list including businessmen Idan Ofer, Teddy Sagi, and Yaakov Engel, in addition to well-known lawyers Jacob Weinroth and Dov Weissglass, former Prime Minister’s Office director general under late Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. As well as Bank Leumi and Bank Hapoalim.
Concerning lawyer Jacob Weinroth, there are two documents of foreign companies. Sapir Holdings, registered in the British Virgin Islands, was used by Weinroth to deposit NIS 30 million from two clients, Russian oligarches Mikhail Chernoy and Arcadi Gaydamak. Sapir Holdings was mentioned in Weinroth’s trial when he was acquitted of bribery and money laundering.
The another company represented by Weinroth was founded for the purpose of buying land from the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate in Jerusalem.
Haaretz mentioned also the Engel Invest group, including documents of companies through which Engel obtained the franchise to operate a phosphate mine in Togo in West Africa at a cost of over $1 billion.
Other companies related to Engel deal in mining of minerals in other African countries: the Democratic Republic of Congo and Ethiopia.
Other companies whose documents were revealed are related to Ofer and his brother-in-law and former partner, Udi Angel.
The gambling tycoon Teddy Sagi reportedly has 16 offshore companies, some of which were used to hold real estate, including the famous project Sagi launched last year on the Camden site in London, accorfing to the documents.
It is legal to use offshore accounts, and possessing one is legitimate when used for legitimate purposes.
a spokeswoman for the Israel Tax Authority said the agency would begin sifting through the materials in search of tax evasion, money laundering and other financial crimes. Searching through the mound of evidence, however, would take time.