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Pandora Papers: Ecuador President Guillermo Lasso to Be Investigated For Tax Fraud

The preliminary investigation into alleged tax fraud was opened on October 18 after offshore companies owned by Guillermo Lasso were mentioned in the Pandora Papers.

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Quito: Ecuador’s attorney general’s office on Thursday said it has opened a preliminary investigation against President Guillermo Lasso for tax fraud, after an opposition leader presented allegations against him linked to the Pandora Papers leak.

Former presidential candidate and indigenous leader Yaku Perez called for an investigation into Lasso’s finances and tax contributions after offshore companies owned by Lasso were mentioned in the Pandora Papers.

The papers are a cache of leaked documents that The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) says reveal offshore transactions involving global political and business figures.

Also Read: Will Monitor and Investigate Cases Arising from ‘Pandora Papers’: Centre

Perez urged investigators look at accounts held by Lasso and his close relatives since 2013, when he was a presidential candidate.

The president’s office was not immediately available to comment.

Lasso has questioned the Pandora Papers leak, describing it as “some old and out-of-context information,” and adding that he had dropped control of the mentioned companies in 2017 when he once again became a presidential candidate.

In 2017, Ecuador passed a law banning elected officials and candidates from holding investments in so-called tax havens.