One of the world’s largest firms loaned a businessman previously accused of corruption $45m and asked him to negotiate mining rights in a poor central African nation, the Paradise Papers reveal.
Anglo-Swiss company Glencore made the loan available to Israeli billionaire Dan Gertler, a notorious middleman with a close relationship with senior figures in the DR Congo government, in 2009.
Mr Gertler was asked to negotiate a new deal for a mining company in which Glencore had a significant stake, which campaigners say cost DR Congo hundreds of millions of dollars.
He and Glencore deny any wrongdoing. Glencore agreed to pay Dan Gertler $534m (£407m) to buy him out of their shared mining interests in DR Congo in February this year.
The new details came to light in the Paradise Papers, a leak of more than 13.4 million documents, many from within Appleby, one of the world’s leading offshore law firms.
The central African country of DR Congo has been mired in violence and corruption for decades, leaving more than half of its population living below the poverty line.