Accountant explains the benefits of tax havens to avoid money laundering detection

By Christine Duhaime | April 7th, 2017

If you ever wondered if there is a definitive text about tax havens, well apparently there is in the form of a series of text books called “Tax Havens of the World”, written by Walter Diamond, who was an accountant at Deloitte and KPMG, and a prolific teacher of the benefits of tax havens, as well as an advisor to the US government.

“Tax Havens of the World” was updated annually until 2009, the year Mr. Diamond died. Mr. Diamond started out as bank examiner but somehow wound his way into writing text books for 25 years that promoted the use of tax havens to defeat law enforcement and government oversight.

In “Tax Havens of the World”, he writes of the many benefits and advantages of tax havens and summarizes each of them. He also writes about their usefulness and explains why accountants and other professionals, as well as corporations, among others, should use them. The key benefits, he writes, include:

  • to cloak foreign bank accounts in secrecy;
  • to shift investments without being taxed;
  • to give privacy to financial dealings and what your financial assets are; and
  • to have no government control.

The aim of “Tax Havens of the World” according to the text book, is to provide a “shopping guide” to select the best country to cloak one’s money and protect it from government control. Mr. Diamond remarked that offshore tax havens were the target of unfair “virulent attacks” by governments and accusatory tactics by the Financial Action Task Force.

Each country highlighted by Mr. Diamond lists things like how to set up trusts versus foundations, how to set up companies for anonymity (beneficial ownership problem), and the strength of each country’s anti-money laundering enforcement, as well as what must be disclosed to authorities if an entity parks its money in that jurisdiction.

Despite what appears to be the questionable legality of some of the advice to use tax havens to cloak banks accounts and private corporations in secrecy, to avoid taxes and avoid anti-money laundering reporting, Mr. Diamond’s text books are still available at libraries around the world.

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