British Prime Minister David Cameron's office on Tuesday said the use of Panama-based lawyers Mossack Fonseca by his late father's offshore company, as part of a tax avoidance scheme, was "a private matter."
Ian Cameron, who died in 2010, had controlled a Panama-registered investment fund through Blairmore Holdings Inc since 1982. He is named in some of the 11 million documents leaked from the law firm.
The listing of Cameron's father in the Panama Papers prompted calls by British media and politicians for the British prime minister to explain the current status of the Panama-registered fund, repay the tax avoided, and close loopholes in British tax law.
But a spokesman for Cameron said the issue was "a private matter" and declined to comment further.
The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), which analysed documents first leaked to German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung, quoted a Blairmore Holdings prospectus for investors as saying the investment fund should be managed "so that it does not become resident [in Britain] for taxation purposes."
The ICIJ quoted the leaked documents as saying the fund had achieved its offshore status by using untraceable "bearer shares" held by nominees in the Bahamas, a practice that Britain outlawed last year.