Late in October, global financial advisory firm Appleby posted a curious statement on its website, stating it had been contacted by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) regarding a massive data leak from its offices. The strength of the statement, robustly denying any wrongdoing, and the mention of the consortium showed something big was afoot. A year earlier, the ICIJ had coordinated the biggest ever exposé of the secretive offshore finance industry – the Panama Papers – which toppled governments, kick-started criminal investigations and led to global outcry.
On Sunday 5 November, 95 ICIJ media partners worldwide exposed their revelations. They called them the Paradise Papers.
The Paradise Papers are 13.4 million files leaked from two firms that provide professional financial and corporate services to global elites. The companies worked with a global network of accountants, lawyers and bankers to help manage and hide eye-watering amounts of money from tax collectors