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US News Documents reveal how 'Africa's richest woman' stole fortune from her country

06:35  20 january  2020
06:35  20 january  2020 Source:   france24.com

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An award-winning investigative team published a trove of files Sunday allegedly showing how Africa ' s richest woman syphoned hundreds of millions of Isabel Dos Santos, daughter of Angola’s former President and Africa ' s richest woman , sits for a portrait during a Reuters interview in London, Britain

A trove of files has revealed how Isabel dos Santos -- dubbed Africa ' s richest woman -- really made her fortune AFP/File. An award-winning investigative team published a trove of files Sunday allegedly showing how the daughter of Angola's former president -- dubbed Africa ' s richest woman

(Video by Reuters)

An award-winning investigative team published a trove of files Sunday allegedly showing how Africa's richest woman syphoned hundreds of millions of dollars of public money into offshore accounts.

The New York-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) worked with newspapers such as Munich's Suddeutsche Zeitung to reveal the "Panama Papers" tax haven scandal in 2016.

Its latest series called "Luanda Leaks" zeros in on Isabel dos Santos, the daughter of former Angola president Jose Eduardo dos Santos.

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An award-winning investigative team published a trove of files Sunday allegedly showing how Africa ' s richest woman syphoned hundreds of millions of dollars of public money into offshore accounts. The New York-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) worked with newspapers

A trove of files has revealed how Isabel dos Santos -- dubbed Africa ' s richest woman -- really made her fortune . The group said its team of 120 reporters in 20 countries was able to trace " how an army of Western financial firms, lawyers, accountants, government officials and management

Angola's prosecutors last month froze the bank accounts and assets owned by the 46-year-old businesswoman and her Congolese husband Sindika Dokolo, which she described as a groundless political vendetta.

"Based on a trove of more than 715,000 files, our investigation highlights a broken international regulatory system that allows professional services firms to serve the powerful with almost no questions asked," the ICIJ wrote.

The group said its team of 120 reporters in 20 countries was able to trace "how an army of Western financial firms, lawyers, accountants, government officials and management companies helped (dos Santos and Dokolo) hide assets from tax authorities".

Isabel dos Santos smiling for the camera © REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo

Dos Santos took to Twitter to refute the claims, launching a salvo of around 30 tweets in Portuguese and English, and accusing journalists involved in the investigation of telling "lies".

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Leaked documents reveal how Africa ' s richest woman made her fortune through exploiting her own country , and corruption. Ms Dos Santos had been put in charge of the struggling Sonangol in 2016, thanks to a presidential decree from her father Jose Eduardo dos Santos, who kept a tight grip on his

The country is rich in oil and diamonds but hobbled by corruption, with grinding poverty, widespread illiteracy and a high infant mortality rate. Now, a trove of more than 700,000 documents obtained by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, and shared with The New York Times, shows

"My fortune is built on my character, my intelligence, education, capacity for work, perseverance," she wrote. 

She also blasted "the racism and prejudice" of SIC-Expresso, a Portuguese TV station and newspaper, and member of the ICIJ, "that recall the colonial era when an African could never be considered equal to a European".

Dos Santos's lawyer dismissed the ICIJ findings as a "highly coordinated attack" orchestrated by Angola's current rulers, in a statement quoted by The Guardian newspaper.

Dos Santos herself told BBC Africa the file dump was part of a "witch hunt" meant to discredit her and her father.

The former president's daughter headed Angola's national oil company Sonangol. Forbes magazine last year estimated her net worth at $2.2 billion.

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Her father's successor Joao Lourenco forced her out of the oil company after becoming president in 2017.

Documents reveal how 'Africa's richest woman' stole fortune from her country

  Documents reveal how 'Africa's richest woman' stole fortune from her country An award-winning investigative team published a trove of files Sunday allegedly showing how Africa's richest woman syphoned hundreds of millions of dollars of public money into offshore accounts. An award-winning investigative team published a trove of files Sunday allegedly showing how Africa's richest woman syphoned hundreds of millions of dollars of public money into offshore accounts.

Leaked documents reveal how Africa ' s richest woman made her fortune through exploiting her own country and corruption. The documents show how she and her husband were allowed to buy valuable state assets in a series of very dubious deals. The BBC's Andrew Harding interviewed her

The complex financial schemes that helped Africa ’ s richest woman amass a fortune at vast cost to the Angolan state can be revealed for the first time after a huge leak of confidential documents from her Challenged about how she has apparently benefited from her father’s decrees, Dos Santos

Dos Santos said on Wednesday that she would consider running for president in the next election in 2022.

Western consultants 

The ICIJ investigation said Western consulting firms such as PwC and Boston Consulting Group were "apparently ignoring red flags" while helping her stash away public assets.

"Regulators around the globe have virtually ignored the key role Western professionals play in maintaining an offshore industry that drives money laundering and drains trillions from public coffers," the report said.

Its document trove included redacted letters allegedly showing how consultants sought out ways to open non-transparent bank accounts.

One confidential document allegedly drafted by Boston Consulting in September 2015 outlined a complex scheme for the oil company to move its money offshore.

The investigation also published a similar 99-page presentation from KPMG.

None of the companies named issued immediate statements in response to the investigation.

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