"Romney’s taxes not only serve as a window into his own personal finances, they’re a record of his own active tax avoidance on behalf of others. Many of the offshore corporations on Romney’s 2010 tax return were not simply personal investment preferences –- they were shell companies established by Bain Capital.

“The thing that bothered me the most about his offshoring investments was not that he or his partners at Bain avoided paying taxes, but that they made it really easy for investors to cheat on their taxes,” said Rebecca Wilkins, senior counsel for federal tax policy at Citizens for Tax Justice. “If you wanted to cheat, Bain Capital just made it really easy for you.”

Both Bain and Romney flirted with the edge of legality by using sham derivative transactions to mask investments in U.S. stocks, lowering their American tax burden. The IRS has been cracking down on this activity since 2010, as HuffPost reported in August. Thousands of pages of Bain documents released by Gawker also reveal that Bain gamed its management fees in order to help its investors avoid paying taxes –- a tactic that is straightforwardly illegal, according to Victor Fleisher, a tax expert and professor of law at the University of Colorado."