The Macris acquired Correo Argentino, the state postal service, before leading it into receivership. A previously hidden audit of Meinl bank shows how the Macri patriarch, Franco, later secretly gave Meinl control of Correo’s debts in a deal that raised suspicions in Austria. 2/
While the Macris were negotiating with creditors, the audit shows, the ties between them and Meinl were multiplying.
Once the secret deal was struck, Meinl started to make decisions that seemed to favor the Macris ahead of itself. 3/
NEW: As part of an effort to uncover the truth behind the murder of Mexican journalist #ReginaMartinez — who was killed on this day 9 yrs ago — OCCRP is releasing 1000s of records related to the investigation.
NEW: With Reza Zarrab expected to testify in a US court for helping Iran evade sanctions, we show how the money launderer was just a cog in a larger scheme involving the Turkish gov’t and transactions with major global banks. #WhoBankedForIran 1/ occrp.org/en/how-iran-us…
Who is Reza Zarrab? The money launderer will be a key witness in the US prosecution of Turkish state-owned Halkbank, which is accused of knowingly facilitating Zarrab’s sanction-busting scheme in the 2010s.
#FraudFactory uncovered an international scam that used Facebook ads and an army of multilingual salespeople to defraud people around the world out of millions of dollars. Many of the victims have been left in financial ruin. occrp.org/en/fraud-facto…
➡️ 2004: St. Petersburg police found that Korolev, who then worked in the FSB’s economic division, had close contact with Oleg Makovoz, an organized criminal figure later sentenced to 23 yrs for kidnapping, extortion, and murder. 3/
The last thing they heard from him, before he went silent, is that the FSB search may be related to a 2016 story he published in Novaya Gazeta, his previous employer. /2
@istories_media That story concerned Igor Sechin, a former deputy prime minister and now the head of the state-controlled oil giant Rosneft. It connected Sechin with an ultra-luxurious mega-yacht, the St. Princess Olga.
NEW: Chechnya’s longtime ruler, Ramzan Kadyrov, has often promoted polygamy in the conservative Islamic republic. With @wwwproektmedia, we reveal that he practices what he preaches. Kadyrov has a second wife — and she’s worth millions. 1/ occrp.org/en/investigati…
In 2006, when Fatima Khazuyeva was 14 years old, she took second place in an unusual Chechen beauty contest — and Kadyrov was in attendance. Multiple sources have confirmed that she is now his second wife. 2/
Chechnya is one of Russia's poorest regions. But Khazuyeva owns three Moscow apartments worth $5 million. She also has a large mansion in central Grozny, right by Kadyrov’s working residence. And her mother owns a for-profit rehabilitation center built near her home village. 3/
Financial and legal documents show that two officials close to President Hage Geingob set up several companies that skimmed $4.5m from a ~$640m contract that involved Fishcor, a state-owned fishing company. 2/
The two officials accused of helping devise this scheme are also awaiting trial for their role in #Fishrot, Namibia’s largest bribery scandal.
➡️ Sacky Shanghala: The attorney-general at the time.
➡️ James Hatuikulipi: The former chairman of the board of Fishcor. 3/
What is Macbridge? Activists in Malta have pushed the gov’t to find out who’s behind the obscure company, which was mentioned by disgraced accounting firm Nexia BT in a leaked email that discussed channeling money to public officials. 2/
Today, we reveal that Macbridge is a Hong Kong-based firm tied to a prominent Chinese businessman who was also being relentlessly investigated by Caruana Galizia before her murder.
➡️ Chen Cheng, a senior exec at the Chinese branch of multinational consulting firm Accenture. 3/
This bargain sale, done via companies in Cyprus, was finalized on the same day in 2014 that dozens of gunmen in unmarked military fatigues, known as "little green men," stormed the Crimean parliament.
Both events have helped Russia assert influence in Ukraine. 2/
Medvedchuk and his business partner, Taras Kozak, were recently sanctioned by Ukraine’s government for allegedly financing terrorism. Three news channels under their control have been taken off the air. 3/
NEW: A former CIA director and a Trump fundraiser arrived in Turkey in 2018 to help an imprisoned pastor.
What they didn't know was that their host, a businessman linked to Turkey’s president, was entangled in a half-billion-dollar fraud case. 1/ occrp.org/en/investigati…
OCCRP and @LawCrimeNews have reconstructed the backchannel trip, which saw former spy chief James Woolsey and current Republican National Committee co-chair Tommy Hicks Jr. attempt to secure the release of Pastor Andrew Brunson. 2/
Their Turkish host was Sezgin Baran Korkmaz, a businessman implicated in a fraud case involving a Mormon fundamentalist sect, Armenian-American organized crime, and the theft of half a billion dollars from the U.S. government. 3/
Shehu, who offered OCCRP’s reporter "whatever you want" in exchange for dropping the story, is accused of stealing land meant to be returned to Albanians after the collapse of its communist government.
Italian police have linked him to drug trafficking and money laundering. 2/
A former special forces soldier, Shehu allegedly prospered in drug trafficking.
But his time in Albania ended in 1999 after his uncle was gunned down at Shehu’s bar, dying in his arms. 3/
2/ Alexei Aleksin and Alexander Zaytsev are a new breed of Belarusian businessmen: relatively young, global in outlook, and free from EU sanctions.
The pair emerged just as Belarus’s previous generation of oligarchs were sanctioned.
3/ When Aleksin decided to launch his own cigarette factory, Lukashenko personally redrew the borders of the Belarusian capital to ensure it would be located outside the city, and therefore less encumbered by building regulations.
Serbian pro-government tabloids have published stories falsely accusing @KRIKrs and its editor in chief @StevanOCCRP of having ties to the Kavač — a violent Montenegrin gang that KRIK exposed in a major 2020 investigation. 2/ occrp.org/en/balkan-coca…
"This blatantly false accusation puts KRIK journalists in serious danger — by linking them to the Kavač gang’s criminal activities, these pro-state tabloids provide criminal groups justification for murder."
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/ occrp.org/en/investigati…
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."
•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/