Panama City. Image: Mario Roberto Duran Ortiz Panama City. Image: Mario Roberto Duran Ortiz

Panamanian police have raided the headquarters of Mossack Fonseca, the law firm at the centre of the huge data leak revealing how the wealthy elite avoid tax.

Over 11 million documents were leaked, naming 72 current and former head of state. It included a multi-billion dollar money laundering scheme linked to Vladimir Putin, a separate situation resulted in the resignation of Iceland's Prime Minister, and David Cameron was forced to admit he had shares in an offshore company set up by his late father.

Prosecutors in Panama said the raid was completed "without incident of interference". The attorney general's office said the aim had been "to obtain documentation linked to the information published in news articles that establish the use of the firm in illicit activities".

Many of those named in the documents, and Mossack Fonseca itself, has stressed that they have done nothing illegal. Mossack Fonseca even claimed it was the victim of a hack, rather than the documents being leaked by an insider.

Following the scandal, Panamanian President Juan Carlos Varela has promised to work with the international community to improve transparency around the issue.

Several countries have launched investigations into those implicated by the leaks, with many considering whether or not there are grounds for criminal charges.

Yesterday, the European Union revealed plans to tackle tax avoidance among multinational corporations operating within the Union. Under the new rules, any company with sales of £600 million or more will be forced to reveal how much tax they pay and in which EU countries.

EU financial services commissioner Lord Hill said: “This is a carefully thought through but ambitious proposal for more transparency on tax.

“While our proposal on is not of course focused principally on the response to the Panama Papers, there is an important connection between our continuing work on tax transparency and tax havens that we are building into the proposal.”

Despite his involvement in the scandal, Prime Minister David Cameron is due to host an international summit on tackling tax avoidance in a few weeks time.