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Slovak programmer mentioned in Panama Papers

About 115 names linked to Slovakia have appeared in the documents indicating tax evasions and money laundering.

Mossack Fonseca, Panama City(Source: AP/SITA)

One of the Slovak names mentioned in the documents which leaked from the Panama-based law firm Mossack Fonseca is Marek Rosa. His company Keen Software House develops successful games and programmes artificial intelligence.

This stems from the documents published by the Czech Centre for Investigative Journalism, which obtained the Panama Papers containing 11.5 million documents from Mossack Fonseca.

Read also:Will the Panama Papers affect Slovak politics?

The fact that Rosa is mentioned in the documents does not automatically mean that he tried to legalise the illegally obtained income. Entrepreneurs establish their firms in tax havens also to simplify investments or reduce taxes, which is unethical, but not illegal, the Sme daily reported.

Rosa has, according to the Czech Centre for Investigative Journalism, links to company AI Assets Ltd. based in Seychelles, together with Ivana Rosová. The company’s shareholder is Slovak businessman and investor Milan Hošek, who often writes blogs about share markets and defends minority shareholders. He told Sme that he gave Rosa money for his business activities. In return, he obtained shares in Keen Software House company.

“I am a co-investor,” Hošek added. “In the beginning I gave him €4,000 and bought shares of the company.”

He also does not think that Keen Software House was established to launder money. He has never communicated with lawyers from Mossack Fonseca, Hošek added.

Except for Hošek and Rosa, also other Slovaks are mentioned in Panama Papers. For now, there are some 115 names. Most of them are linked to company Green Carbon Renewables, situated in the British Virgin Islands.

Read also:Slovaks allegedly involved in Panama Papers

Green Carbon Renewables resides in Sládkovičovo. Its head is reportedly John Novak from Vancouver, Canada. Novak served as president of the Chamber of Slovak-Canadian Business Cooperation, situated on Čajakova Street in Bratislava. Though the name is similar to the Canadian-Slovak Chamber of Commerce (KSOK), the two institutions are different.

Moreover, the KSOK has officially disassociated itself from Novak and his activities, the TASR newswire reported.

The Denník N daily reported about another company, Afragola whose authorised representative is Martin Benedikovič from Nitra. According to financial analysts from FinStat, he owns altogether 12 Slovak firms with Panama-based owners. He is also the owner of the third most profitable company in Slovakia, Territorio, which resides at the same address as Afragola.

Denník N wrote earlier this year that Territorio reported a very high profit of €300 million, though it did not have any revenues.

Meanwhile, the Slovak Financial Administration (FA) has contacted its German partners and asked them for respective documents. The whole case will be investigated by the criminal office of the FA in cooperation with the National Criminal Agency, FA spokesperson Patrícia Macíková told the public-service broadcaster RTVS.

Slovakia has not signed any agreement with Panama enabling the exchange of tax information, she added.

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Topic: Corruption & scandals


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