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Queen should say sorry and be investigated over offshore cash - Corbyn

Queen should say sorry and be investigated over offshore cash - Corbyn

The leaked documents from the Paradise Papers have revealed that Queen Elizabeth II's private estate had invested over Rs 85 crore in offshore accounts.

A small amount from the funds ended up in the company behind BrightHouse, a chain accused of irresponsible lending, and retail chain Threshers, which went bust owing 17.5 million pounds in United Kingdom tax.

A spokesman for the Duchy of Lancaster said: "We operate a number of investments and a few of these are with overseas funds".

The documents about Elizabeth's financial holdings are part of a tranche of some 13.4 million records of offshore accounts dubbed the "Paradise Papera", leaked to German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung and shared with the International Consortium of Journalists and a network of more than 380 journalists in 67 countries.

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The Duchy stated that it was not involved in the decisions made by the funds, and there is no evidence that the Queen also had any information about the individual investments made on its behalf. She is also the legal owner of numerous swans on the River Thames.

The Paradise Papers reporting is similar to the Panama Papers, which in 2016 exposed cases involving celebrities and business executives who reportedly moved large chunks of their wealth into offshore tax havens.

Last month, it was ordered to pay 14.8 million pounds in compensation to 249,000 customers.

In the most recent fiscal year, the Duchy generated £19.2 million ($25 million) in net income according to its website.

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As per reports in the BBC, during 2004-05 the Duchy invested over Rs 42 crore in Bermuda-based Jubilee Absolute Return Fund Ltd and around the same amount in Dover Street VI Cayman Fund LP.

Documents show that in 2005, the Duchy committed to an investment of 7.5 million pounds ($12.7 million Cdn in today's dollars) in the Dover Street fund, payable over time.

"The Queen voluntarily pays tax on any income she receives from the Duchy". All of our investments are fully audited and legitimate.

"The Duchy s investment policy is based on advice and recommendations from our investment consultants and asset allocation rather than tax strategy", said Chris Adcock, the duchy's chief finance officer. "The situation is made worse by revelations her wealth management team have invested in an offshore portfolio", the campaign group said.

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The Queen doesn't directly oversee the Duchy's investments, and most of its income, while private, goes toward covering the expenses for her and other royals that aren't covered by public funds through the sovereign grant.