ONE of Scotland’s biggest landowners has been named in the Pandora Papers for his alleged use of offshore companies to purchase property.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, billionaire ruler of oil-rich Dubai, is alleged in the papers to have used offshore companies in his property dealings.

The Sheikh is the owner of the Killilan and Inverinate estate in Wester Ross. There is no suggestion that 63,000-acre estate was purchased via an offshore company, nor is there any allegation of illegality.

Sheikh Mohammed rarely visits his Scottish estate, but fought and won a two-year battle to build a six-bedroom lodge on the estate, which already has a 30 bedroom manor house and a 16 bedroom lodge with swimming pool plus helipads.

He bought the estate more than 20 years ago for a reported £2 million, a small dent in his reported fortune of £3 billion which includes the massive Godolphin racing operation.

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The data was obtained by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) based in Washington DC, which has been working with more than 140 media organisations and a total of 650 journalists on the 14m documents that make up the Papers.

More than 330 politicians from 90 countries are named in the Pandora Papers and, as The National reported yesterday, they included former prime minister Tony Blair and his wife Cherie are alleged to have avoided paying £321,000 in stamp duty when they bought an office in London by purchasing the offshore company that owned it.

Also named in the papers was retail tycoon Sir Philip Green, whose wife is alleged to have splurged £70m on property even while his BHS business was in trouble. It closed in 2016 with 11,000 jobs lost.

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The BBC reported: “The couple spent tens of millions after selling the BHS chain which went bust with a huge hole in its pension fund.”

The Greens declined to comment to the BBC, saying these were private matters.

The privacy of offshore activities has riled most political parties except the Conservatives who have been shown to accept huge donations from users of offshore tax havens.

The party’s co-chairman Ben Elliot was even named by the Daily Mail – the newspaper that constantly supports the Tories – for jointly owning a secret offshore film company in a tax haven.

The Mail reported: “At the centre of the new revelations is a British Virgin Islands company E&G Productions, said to be co-owned by Ben Elliot, the nephew of the Duchess of Cornwall, and his friend Ben Goldsmith, the financier and Tory advisor brother of environment minister Lord Zac Goldsmith.”

The Pandora Papers reveal E&G indirectly benefitted from £121,000 of UK tax credits, which are funded by the taxpayer via HMRC.

Scottish Greens finance spokesperson Ross Greer, said: “The revelations are shocking, but they are not surprising. For far too long the UK has been at the heart of international dirty money and the tax avoidance industry.

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“This is not an accident. The system is doing exactly what it was designed to do, which is to enrich the wealthy and powerful at the expense of the rest of us, robbing our public services of the funding they so desperately need.

“The Tories have shown time and again that they have no interest in fixing the system, and why would they for as long as the money keeps flowing into their party coffers?

“Last year the Scottish Greens secured a ban on Covid bailouts for tax avoiders, but if we are to go further then we need the powers to do so, the powers of a normal, independent nation.”

He added: “If we are to build back a fairer, greener and more equal Scotland, then we must break from a system which puts tax avoidance and the wealth of the super-rich ahead of the wellbeing of our citizens. Only with independence can Scotland secure such a recovery.”