Leaked docs reveal Russian oligarch Abramovich's secret Chelsea deals

For decades, a flood of foreign money has poured into the island of Cyprus, bringing extreme wealth to a few, but leaving the EU member status with a reputation as a shady financial hub.

On Tuesday, the eight-month Cyprus Confidential investigation, carried out by dozens of journalists across the globe, revealed the sheer scale of dirty money that has been moved through Cyprus for oligarchs, tyrants, criminals and Russian president Vladamir Putin in recent years.

Among them is billionaire and former owner of Chelsea FC, Roman Abramovich, who like many oligarchs was sanctioned in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

But how did Abramovich funnel money through Cypriot financial institutions and what does he buy with these vast sums of cash?

Did Abramovich’s funding of Chelsea FC breach financial fair play rules? And, what financial investments did the Russian football club owner have in Ireland?

Irish Times journalist Colm Keena, who is also a member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists which produced Cyprus Confidential, joins the podcast to discuss the how Cyprus fuelled the Kremlin’s financial machine in the years leading up to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Presented by Sorcha Pollak. Produced by John Casey.

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