When the recently leaked “Panama Papers” exposed the existence of thousands of offshore bank accounts of the politically high and mighty, Hillary Clinton quickly decried them as “outrageous tax havens” for “the super-rich.”
But it turns out that the Democratic presidential front-runner and her husband have multiple connections with people named in the papers — including staffers and major donors.
Among those named in the papers as using the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca to set up offshore entities are Gabrielle Fialkoff, who served as Clinton’s finance director during her first campaign for the Senate in New York, according to a report published online at mcclatchydc.com.
Fialkoff is also a senior adviser to Mayor Bill de Blasio and director of the city’s Office of Strategic Partnership.
Another name from the papers is billionaire Frank Giustra, a Canadian mining magnate and longtime crony of Bill Clinton who has donated $100 million to the Clinton Foundation.
Yet another name from the paper is The Chagoury Group, an international developer based in West Africa that has pledged $1 billion in projects to the Clinton Global Initiative.
Additional names include Chinese billionaire Ng Lap Seng, who was at the center of a Democratic fund-raising scandal during the Clinton administration, and Marc Rich, the notorious international fugitive pardoned by Bill Clinton in his final hours as president in 2001, McClatchy reported.
McClatchy Newspapers and some 350 other reporters under the umbrella of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists have been pouring over a massive dump of more than 11.5 million files Mossack Fonseca documents, revealing their first findings earlier this month.
The firm has denied any wrongdoing.
– Photo: Gabrielle Fialkoff is a contributor to Mayor Bill de Blasio‘s campaign committee, New Yorkers for de Blasio, which is reportedly the subject of a wide-ranging, Federal corruption investigation. Before she was named as director of the Office of Strategic Partnerships, Ms. Fialkoff was chair of Mayor de Blasio’s inauguration committee.
“Now some of this behavior is clearly against the law, and everyone who violates the law anywhere should be held accountable,” Hillary Clinton said of the scandal at a recent AFL-CIO convention.
“But it’s also scandalous how much is actually legal,” she added.
The Clintons themselves do not appear to be mentioned in the document dump, McClatchy reported.
But their ties to multiple big-money names that turn up in the documents as using offshore accounts will be sure to fuel the campaign rhetoric of Bernie Sanders, Hillary’s Democratic presidential rival.
Sanders has condemned Hillary as a wealthy Washington insider who is in league with Wall Street fat cats.