NEW: Sixteen years after Azerbaijani journalist Elmar Huseynov was gunned down steps from his apartment, OCCRP has obtained FBI files laying out a slew of missteps by Azerbaijani authorities. #ElmarHuseynov 1/…
2/ Huseynov was known for writing that targeted the wealthy and powerful of Azerbaijan. OCCRP reporting shows that with the probe into his death long stalled, one murder suspect has been living freely in Georgia, buying up property.
3/ According to @rebecca_vincent with @RSF_en, the murder "was no doubt intended to send a clear signal not to cross certain red lines, and was effective in creating a chilling effect that can still be felt to this day."
4/ @FBI Legal Attaché Bryan Paarmann found there were basic failures in crime scene control on the night of the killing, and expressed concern that Azerbaijan was focusing too much on theories that a foreign state may have plotted the murder

• • •

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More from @OCCRP

26 Feb
NEW: British American Tobacco has oversupplied Mali with cigarettes for years, knowing their product falls into the hands of traffickers, jihadists, and armed militias.

Our #BigTobacco investigation with @CENOZO_Afrique. 1/…
@CENOZO_Afrique How The Illicit Trade Works:

•BAT oversupplies Mali with cigarette packs with "clean labels," meaning they can be sold widely, including in Europe.
•They are smuggled north through militia-controlled regions
•Insurgents and jihadists linked to IS and al-Qaida profit 2/
@CENOZO_Afrique Islamists, militias, and corrupt officials work together to smuggle BAT’s cigarettes — mainly the Dunhill brand — through Mali’s lawless deserts, sources told OCCRP.

“Armed groups play the role of customs,” an ex-employee of a BAT distributor said. “Yes, [BAT] knows.” 3/
Read 8 tweets
15 Feb
NEW: OCCRP and @irpinvestigates uncover new details about the ’Ndrangheta mafia’s presence in Luxembourg.

We found restaurants, bars, and companies tied to a high-ranking member of the fearsome criminal group. #OpenLux…
2) "It is thought from investigations in Germany, Belgium, and the Netherlands especially, that Luxembourg is a transit territory for both mafia individuals and their activities and money," explained @annasergi, a leading expert on the ’Ndrangheta.
3) Santo Rumbo, a rising star in the ’Ndrangheta, relocated to Luxembourg after working with crime bosses in Canada.

Police arrested him in Luxembourg in 2019, but Italian authorities told OCCRP they were uncertain what he was doing in the country.
Read 6 tweets
9 Feb
NEW: Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić denies having any ties to Stanko Subotić, a businessman with links to a regional drug lord.

But now, OCCRP & @KRIKrs reveal that one of the president’s closest confidantes has done business with Subotić. #OpenLux 1/…
The outsized role that Nikola Petrović, the president's "best man," plays in Serbia was noted by five US Congress members in 2015.

In a letter to then-VP Joe Biden, they expressed concern that a small group had "consolidated their influence" over key Serbian industries. 2/
Petrović’s ties to Subotić flow through their respective companies in Luxembourg, an historically secretive jurisdiction.

Reporters found this connection using a corporate registry obtained by @LeMonde. Here’s what they uncovered 👇 3/
Read 6 tweets
8 Feb
Luxembourg has made steps towards greater transparency. But it’s still a prime destination for dirty money worldwide.

Here's how the tiny nation became a center of corporate secrecy, who has benefited, and how our #OpenLux investigation pried it open.…
2) Most "offshore" zones, like Panama or the British Virgin Islands, specialize in one particular facet of secretive financial services. But Luxembourg does it all, acting as "a kind of Swiss army knife" for elites around the world, economics professor @gabriel_zucman told OCCRP.
3) Corrupt officials, criminals, and shady businessmen from around the world have all taken advantage. So much Russian capital has found its way to Luxembourg — and back again — that the tiny European state is now one of the country’s biggest foreign "investors."
Read 8 tweets
8 Feb
NEW: Luxembourg has been a haven for financial crime for decades.

Now, a corporate registry obtained by @LeMondefr, and shared with OCCRP, reveals how global elites used companies in the tiny nation to operate in the shadows.

This is #OpenLux (thread):
2) Using a string of Luxembourg firms, we reveal how Indonesian billionaire Sukanto Tanoto 🇮🇩 secretly purchased the historic Ludwig complex in Munich 🇩🇪

The palm oil tycoon has been dubbed the top driver of deforestation in the world.…
3) It turns out Luxembourg is a favored destination for oligarchs, tycoons, and royalty looking to snap up some of the continent’s most expensive real estate.

We put some of our most interesting findings into this interactive map.…
Read 5 tweets
27 Nov 20
NEW: Starting in 2008, a small U.S. airline was taken over by a group of Russian investors. Two were later convicted of running an organized crime ring out of Trump Tower.

But Monarch Air’s unusual past didn’t stop it winning U.S. gov’t contracts 🛩️… 1/
The two convicted investors, Anatoly Golubchik and Vadim Trincher, were sentenced to five years in jail in 2014 for running a “large-scale sports book” used to launder $100 million.

Golubchik was allegedly an "enforcer" for infamous Russian gang boss Alimzhan Tokhtakhounov. 2/
Today, the son of Trincher and Golubchik's business partner owns Monarch Air.

Despite these ties to organized crime, Monarch and another linked airline have won millions of $$$ in sensitive U.S. gov’t contracts -- including flying people in the witness protection program. 3/
Read 5 tweets

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