New information has come forth confirming that Wintris, an offshore company owned by Anna Sigurlaug Pálsdóttir, former Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson’s wife, did not pay taxes in Iceland according to law over a period of several years. According to an agreement the couple made with the Director of Internal Revenue in 2016, Anna’s tax payments from 2011 to 2015 were reassessed. The couple appealed part of the reassessment, contesting the amount to be paid and the ruling on this appeal was released publicly last week, revealing that Anna was refunded in part.
The Panama Papers made the existence and ownership of Wintris public last year, resulting in Sigmundur Davíð’s resignation as prime minister.
Wintris is an offshore company registered in the British Virgin Islands founded shortly after Anna acquired a prepaid inheritance from her father. Sigmundur Davíð had a 50 percent stake in the company, worth well over 1 billion ISK (USD 9.4 million/EUR 8 million), which he sold to his wife for $1 shortly after becoming a member of parliament in 2009.
According to an analysis by Kjarninn, one month after the existence of the company and the couple’s ownership of it was made public, the couple’s attorney sent a letter to the Director of Internal Revenue requesting their tax returns from 2011 to 2015 be corrected and the charges they had paid be recalculated. In the letter they stated that the taxes owed on Wintris’ assets may have been overlooked.
The letter’s claim that Wintris may not have paid taxes according to law contradicts Sigmundur Davíð and Anna’s public statements that the company had always paid taxes correctly.
Two days before the letter was sent, Sigmundur Davíð made public various information regarding the couple’s finances on his website. The ruling which was made publicly last week makes clear that for several years taxes were not properly paid for the assets held by Wintris and therefore the financial information released by Sigmundur Davíð was not accurate.