07 May 2016

It Would Be My Concern Too

The anonymous source behind the huge leak of documents known as the Panama Papers has offered to aid law enforcement officials in prosecutions related to offshore money laundering and tax evasion, but only if assured of protection from punishment.

“Legitimate whistle-blowers who expose unquestionable wrongdoing, whether insiders or outsiders, deserve immunity from government retribution,” the source, who has still not revealed a name or nationality, said in a statement issued Thursday night.

The documents, which list the true owners of thousands of companies created to hide the people behind them, expose the holdings of current and former world leaders and other prominent figures. The source, who uses the pseudonym John Doe but whose gender is not known, said that the papers could spur thousands of prosecutions, “if only law enforcement could access and evaluate the actual documents.”

John Doe noted that journalists who have viewed the papers have said they will not turn over the full archive of 11.5 million documents. “I, however, would be willing to cooperate with law enforcement to the extent that I am able,” the source wrote.

The statement, which was issued Thursday night under the condition that it not be reported until Friday morning, gave some hints about John Doe’s political views and concerns. They include income inequality, the American campaign finance system and the “revolving door” of United States officials who take jobs at banks or other companies they once regulated.


In the statement, the source denied being a government official or contractor, now or in the past. The confidential source was also extremely critical of the news media, suggesting that certain unnamed news organizations had declined initial offers to take and report on the documents.
I can understand "John Doe's" concern.  There have been numerous cases where whistle blowers have been typically been sentenced to more jail time than the folks actually breaking the laws.

What's more, when one looks at those prosecutions, and the the sentences, it becomes pretty clear that this is a feature of the American criminal justice system, and not a bug.

Prosecutors seem intent on punishing people who whistle blow on members of our plutocracy.


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