These are some of the New Yorkers who have parked their cash offshore or set up companies in farflung island nations to shelter their holdings.
They range from moguls to art-world luminaries to an East Village psychiatrist and a young television actress.
The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists put out the database containing information on nearly 320,000 offshore entities from the so-called Panama Papers and Offshore Leaks investigations.
The data dump is just a fraction of the more than 11 million leaked files from the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca, a leader in creating difficult-to-trace companies. Other data come from two additional companies that specialize in setting up offshore entities.
Also read:Dodging taxes is not just about offshore havens
Offshore companies are often created in tax havens, such as the British Virgin Islands and the Caymans, used to hide assets from authorities around the world or to maintain privacy.
Last month, U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara sent a letter to the ICIJ saying he had “opened a criminal investigation” regarding Panama Papers issues. Officials in Panama raided Mossack Fonseca’s offices there.
The ICIJ cautions that there are “legitimate uses for offshore companies and trusts” and it is not implying that anyone in the database has broken the law. But the group has said at least 36 Americans accused of fraud and other financial crimes appear in the data.
Nakash Family: The founders of Jordache jeans — brothers Joseph, Ralph and Avi Nakash — and other family members are linked to several offshore companies including a defunct entity named Blue Jeans Ltd. in the British Virgin Islands. The Nakashes are major real-estate investors in New York and own hotels, office buildings and residential properties across the country. Joseph Nakash is an investor in the New York Wheel, a 630-foot-tall Ferris wheel currently being built on Staten Island.
Alexis Dziena: The actress who played Ashley Brooks on “Entourage” is listed as an adviser and beneficiary of the Theresa Funding Trust in the Cook Islands. Her father, Alexander, is a beneficiary of the trust, as is her mother, Madeline, who established it in 2009. A Manhattan bank executive was the trust’s investment adviser. The 31-year-old New York native unsuccessfully sought a restraining order against her parents in 2011, claiming they might resort to “murder or violence” to claim her money.
Denise Rich: Rich, 72, is a Grammy-nominated songwriter and philanthropist who is linked to two offshore companies, DTD Limited in the Cook Islands and The Dry Trust, of unknown location. She is the widow of Marc Rich, the fugitive billionaire trader pardoned by President Bill Clinton on his last day in office in 2001. Records released in 2013 as part of the Offshore Leaks investigation revealed she had stashed more than $140 million in a Cook Islands trust, which included a Learjet and a 157-foot sailboat. In 2012, she dumped her U.S. citizenship and became an Austrian citizen in order to avoid paying taxes.
Merle Hoffman: An activist who runs the Choices Women’s Health Center, a clinic and abortion provider in Queens, was a beneficiary of the defunct Hoffman Family Trust in the Cook Islands. Hoffman, 70, who has lived on Park Avenue and also owns a waterfront home in the Hamptons, has racked up hundreds of thousands in federal and state tax liens over the years. She still owes $860,975 to the IRS and $13,068 to the state, public records show. A spokeswoman for Hoffman said the trust was created “maybe 20 years or so ago [and] never had any activity.”
John King: King, 63, started Chung King Studios, which was dubbed the “Abbey Road of hip-hop.” Run-DMC, Public Enemy, the Beastie Boys and LL Cool J recorded at the Manhattan studios, as did Moby, Phish, Depeche Mode, Beyoncé and Lady Gaga. The studios closed last year. King is the beneficiary of several trusts in the British Virgin Islands and the Cook Islands.
Arline Tarte: A top realtor with Brown Harris Stevens with two current Manhattan listings north of $10 million, Tarte is a shareholder in a company called Challis International Ltd. in the British Virgin Islands. The 74-year-old Upper East Sider told The Post she knew nothing about the offshore company and didn’t recall investing in it. “I think that’s wonderful,” she said. “I’d like to know what I have.”
Barry Gesser: Gesser, an associate of “Wolf of Wall Street” Jordan Belfort, pleaded guilty to fraud in 1999. He was sentenced to three years’ probation. The Post reported that his marriage to actress Stacey Alysson last year ended after just 15 days when she found him in bed with socialite Dori Cooperman. In December, the 52-year-old with a drug-abuse history was found dead in his Los Angeles home. The ex-Manhattanite was tied to two offshore trusts incorporated in the 1990s that are now defunct.
Columbia University: The Ivy League college’s Columbia Investment Management Company LLC, which manages the university’s endowment, is a shareholder in the Haton Polymer & Fibre Corp. located in the Cayman Islands. The university has not commented on the investment.
Eugene Kashper: The Russian immigrant bought the Pabst Brewing Co. for a reported $700 million in 2014. Kashper, 46, got his start in the industry as a salesman for Stroh’s in Eastern Europe. Now a multimillionaire, he plunked down $7 million for a Soho apartment in 2006. He is a shareholder in the offshore CMFOS Ltd.
David E. Shaw: Shaw’s D.E. Shaw & Co. describes itself as a “global investment and technology-development firm with more than $37 billion in investment capital.” Fortune magazine once called it “the most intriguing and mysterious force on Wall Street.” Shaw, 65, is also a senior research fellow at the Center for Computational Biology and Bioinformatics at Columbia University and a past member of the President’s Council of Advisers on Science and Technology. His Shaw Family Trust I was set up in an unknown offshore location in 1994.
Charles Ardai: The former CEO of the Internet service provider Juno is also a writer and founder of Hard Case Crime, which publishes pulp-style paperback crime novels. He is “protector” or adviser to the Shaw Family Trust I created by David E. Shaw. Ardai, 46, is a managing director at Shaw’s company.
Paola Mieli: She is a Manhattan-based psychoanalyst who is a member of the Cercle Freudien in Paris. Mieli, 61, is listed as a beneficiary of the offshore Claudius Trust along with the Harvard Business School. She teaches at the School of Visual Arts in Gramercy. In 2007, she traveled to Naples to give a lecture on superstitions surrounding salt.
James R. Mellon II: The 73-year-old banking-family scion and resident of Manhattan and Southampton is associated with several offshore trusts and bragged to a Swiss paper in 2013 that he hopscotched the globe to avoid taxes. “It’s all legal, believe me,” he said. A hunter and author, he is the editor of a 1988 oral history of slavery, “Bullwhip Days: The Slaves Remember,” and a 1980 photo book on Abraham Lincoln. Known as Jay, he is also his family’s unofficial historian and has written a biography of Thomas Mellon, his great-great-grandfather and founder of the storied Pittsburgh bank.
Kojo Annan: The only son of former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan reportedly used a Samoan company called Sapphire Holding Ltd. to purchase a luxury apartment in London. Kojo, 42, who used to rent an apartment in Tribeca, was also linked to two other offshore enterprises that are now defunct. He was accused in the 1990s of profiting from his connection to his father. Although the younger Annan was never prosecuted, he was accused of helping his employer, Cotecna, land a lucrative contract through the UN’s Oil for Food program.
Dominique Levy: Levy owns the Dominique Levy Gallery on Madison Avenue, which sells works by artists such as Gerhard Richter, Frank Stella, Cindy Sherman and Jackson Pollock. The 48-year-old Levy is a shareholder of Aldabra International Ltd., which was incorporated in the British Virgin Islands in 2012. She lives on the Upper East Side and in Bridgehampton, LI, and also owns a gallery in London. “It’s a personal holding company put in place for estate planning and is fully disclosed in the United States,” a gallery spokeswoman said.
New York University School of Medicine: The medical college is tied to two entities in the British Virgin Islands, Scraggy Neck Investments and Huntington Investments Holdings. A college spokesperson told The Post that the accounts were linked to the medical school’s former chairman of neurosurgery, Dr. Patrick Kelly, who used his personal funds and is no longer employed by the university. No NYU funds were part of the transactions, the spokesperson said.
Charlene Marant: Charlene Marant, 62, was a personal investment adviser who was convicted of using elderly clients’ cash to pay the rent on her Wall Street office and fund a luxurious lifestyle. She was released from federal prison in 2010. Marant, who lived in lower Manhattan, was a shareholder of Highland Consultants, which was incorporated in 2005 in the British Virgin Islands and is now defunct.
Gianluigi Longinotti-Buitoni: Longinotti-Buitoni, 62, made his mark selling luxury cars during a recession. The former president and CEO of Ferrari North America is a motivational speaker and the author of “Selling Dreams: How to Make Any Product Irresistible.” Buitoni, who lives in tony Larchmont, was also a shareholder in the now defunct Goal Multimedia Ltd., incorporated in the British Virgin Islands. He had a state tax lien of $5,379, of which he now owes $32.70.
Louise Blouin: Art collector and art-magazine publisher Blouin is already feeling the heat from the Panama Papers fallout. The Post reported that she was poised to sell her La Dune oceanfront estate in Southampton for $145 million but decided to rent it out instead after news of her offshore investments came to light. She is a shareholder of Kirkswood Ltd., located in the British Virgin Islands. She told the Toronto Star that the investment wasn’t a tax dodge but done to fuel her “hobby” — real-estate transactions.
This report originally appeared on NYPost.com.
View more information: https://www.marketwatch.com/story/nearly-500-new-yorkers-offshore-accounts-exposed-by-panama-papers-2016-05-15