British property 'safe haven' for corrupt cash: campaigners

More than 36,000 properties in London are held by companies registered in offshore havens such as the British Virgin Islands, Jersey and the Isle of Man, according to campaign group Transparency InternationalBritish property is a safe haven for money stolen from around the world, with tens of thousands of London properties owned by secretive companies, according to a corruption report released Wednesday. Campaign group Transparency International found 36,342 properties in London covering 3.6 square kilometres are held by companies registered in offshore secrecy havens such as the British Virgin Islands, Jersey and the Isle of Man. In 2011 alone, the report said, £3.8 billion worth of UK property was bought by companies registered in the British Virgin Islands. The group said the use of British property to store stolen wealth may have helped inflate prices — an explosive political issue due to near-record prices and a lack of affordable housing ahead of Britain’s May election.

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