David Cameron to face MPs over Panama Papers scandal

British Prime Minister David Cameron will be facing Members of Parliament for the first time since Panama Papers scandal broke, linking Cameron to his late father’s offshore fund.

British Prime Minister David Cameron
British Prime Minister David Cameron

The UK Prime Minister David Cameron will face Members of Parliament for the first time since Panama Papers scandal broke, at the House of Commons later today, where he will announce that the government is bringing forward plans for criminal penalties on companies whose employees encourage or enable tax evasion.

Parties in the opposition continue to demand answers over Cameron's own tax affairs, after he published data showing his tax and earnings between 2009 and 2015, in an attempt to stave off criticism after he was linked to his late father's offshore fund, Blairmore Holdings, details of which had earlier emerged in a leak of documents from a Panamanian law firm Massack Fonseca.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn insists that Cameron needed to publish his full tax returns dating back to before he became prime minister in 2010, when he sold off shares in Blairmore for a £19,000 profit.

“We need to know why he put this money overseas in the first place, and whether he made anything out of it or not before 2010 when he became prime minister," Corbyn told the BBC.

According to reports, the summary of tax returns released by Cameron show he received two payments of £100,000 from his mother Mary in 2011, a year after he inherited £300,000 from his father, but personal finance experts say it is not unusual for wealthy families to use this kind of "tax planning" to legally avoid inheritance tax.

In  a statement, the PM had said the payments were an attempt to "balance" the sums received by all the Cameron children, as the prime minister's older brother had inherited the family home.

Cameron had already been pushing for greater tax transparency, after announcing the new laws in February 2015, and he is due to hold a summit on beating corruption of all kinds in London next month.

"This government has done more than any other to take action against corruption in all its forms, but we will go further,” he said.

"That is why we will legislate this year to hold companies who fail to stop their employees facilitating tax evasion criminally liable."

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