An Irish priest played a key role in offshore structures holding substantial assets belonging to the wealthy but secretive Catholic order the Legionaries of Christ, the Paradise Papers have revealed.
The Paradise Papers are 13.4 million leaked legal and other files showing tax avoidance and other financial activity across numerous businesses from 1950 to 2016. They have been published over the past week as part of a global investigation by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.
Fr Anthony Bannon (70), a former Irish superior of the organisation, appears in the leaked files from the Appleby law firm alongside the Mexican founder of the order, the late Fr Marcial Maciel Degollado, as well as on the corporate registry in Panama.
Maciel, a long-time friend of Pope John Paul II, has been condemned as a serial sex abuser of seminarians in his cult-like order. He used his order’s money to buy