HM Revenue & Customs heaves deep sigh, promises it's looking into the Panama Papers

Emma Haslett
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The 11m documents appear to reveal the activities of at least 72 heads of state (Source: Getty)

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has said it will "closely examine" data it receives from the so-called Panama Papers leak, and vowed to act on it "swiftly and appropriately".

In a statement following a massive leak last night of papers from Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca, which purport to reveal how some of the world's wealthiest people use tax havens to hide their wealth, HMRC promised it was "committed to exposing and acting on financial wrongdoing".

"We relentless pursue tax evaders to ensure that they pay every penny of taxes and fines they owe," it said.

The 11m documents, revealed by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, appear to show at least 72 current and former heads of state have been helped by to launder money, dodge sanctions and evade tax by Mossack Fonseca.

The documents also suggest more than 500 banks - including offshoots of Credit Suisse, HSBC, UBS, Coutts and Societe Generale, have registered shell companies with Mossack Fonseca.

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