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Former Banker Hands Offshore Account Data to WikiLeaks

HeadlinesJan 18, 2011

A former Swiss banker has handed over a trove of data on offshore banking to the online whistleblower WikiLeaks. At a news conference in London, Rudolf Elmer gave WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange two compact discs containing information on some 2,000 offshore account holders.

Rudolf Elmer: "I’m against the system. I know how the system works, and I know that from a day-to-day business. So, from that point of view, I want to let society know what I do know and how this system works, because it’s damaging our society in a way that money is moved back away, for instance, from financial institutions, multinational conglomerates, high-net-worth individuals. The money is hided [hidden] in offshore centers, so secrecy jurisdictions, technically correct."

Elmer headed the Cayman Islands office of the bank Julius Baer until his firing in 2002. He is scheduled to go on trial in Switzerland this week on allegations of breaching bank secrecy. Assange said WikiLeaks would carefully review the material before a potential release.

Julian Assange: "We will treat this information like all other information we get. So, yes, I presume, once we’ve looked at the data, assuming it’s not anomalous, assuming it’s like everything else we receive, yes, there will be a full revelation."

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