Billions of pounds came through two Glasgow-based companies using obscure structure that let owners hide identities

UK companies using an obscure Scottish business structure are at the centre of a multibillion-dollar operation to funnel cash out of Azerbaijan, an investigation by the Guardian has found.

Scottish limited partnerships (SLPs), structures originally established in the early 1900s for farm holdings, acted as shell companies to channel $2.9bn (£2.2bn) from Azerbaijan into the UK where it was used to buy luxury goods and peddle political influence throughout Europe.

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