The debate in California over how owners can use LLCs to obscure their identities

Delaware and Nevada aren't the only states where it's possible to set up a company without saying who owns it.

In California, too, owners can set up a limited liability company, or LLC, without telling state officials who's behind the curtain.

That anonymity has come under close scrutiny since the release this week of the so-called Panama Papers, which revealed that dozens of global politicians hid assets in offshore shell companies set up by a Panamanian law firm.

And it's been an issue of debate in Los Angeles, where wealthy investors have acquired high-priced real estate through LLCs that have obscured their identity. Continue…