7. How Did Venezuela’s Oil Riches End up in Swiss Banks?39:52Repressed by Venezuela's government on one side. Muzzled by Swiss banking secrecy laws on the other. Yet against these odds, a team of reporters exposed how corrupt Venezuelan elites stashed stolen oil profits in Credit Suisse accounts.In this episode, Nick Wallis interviews OCCRP editor Nathan Jaccard and Armando.Info editor-in-chief Valentina Lares on how a leak of Credit Suisse customer data sparked a global investigation revealing how oil officials convicted of corruption stashed their millions in Switzerland’s notoriously secretive banking sector. We also hear from Latin American financial fraud expert Steven Bodzin about the story’s implications for Venezuela and Swiss banks, how Venezuela’s ongoing crisis could end, and who is to blame for the country’s endemic corruption.Dirty Deeds is a Little Gem production for OCCRP. The host is Nick Wallis. The producer is Lindsay Riley, with research from Phoebe Adler-Ryan and Riham Moussa, at Rethink Audio.Read the investigationBlack Gold in Swiss Vaults: Venezuelan Elites Hid Stolen Oil Money in Credit SuisseThis week’s guestsNathan Jaccard - @NJaccardValentina Lares - @valetinalaresSteven Bodzin - @guacamayanTranscriptRead the transcript on the OCCRP websiteMore information on OCCRPKeep up with the latest in global organized crime and corruption with our weekly newsletterDonate
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6. Sanctioning an Oligarch is Not an Easy Task: Searching for Usmanov’s Millions38:26As Russian forces escalated their war of aggression against Ukraine in 2022, Western governments scrambled to sanction oligarchs connected to Putin’s war machine. Yet the task is far from simple when Kremlin-connected tycoons hide their billions in offshore trusts and Swiss bank accounts — and even behind the names of their family members.In this episode, Nick Wallis talks with OCCRP editing duo Miranda Patrucic and Ilya Lozovsky, discussing how billionaire Alisher Usmanov concealed his fortune via secretive companies, business associates and family members — including Swiss bank accounts in his sister’s name despite her seemingly modest trade as a gynecologist.We also hear from British Member of Parliament Kevin Hollinrake on how Russia’s invasion sparked a campaign to clamp down on dirty money washed through the U.K., as well as how effective Western sanctions have been in choking off the lifelines to Putin’s military campaign.Dirty Deeds is a Little Gem production for OCCRP. The host is Nick Wallis. The producer is Lindsay Riley at Rethink Audio, with research from Phoebe Adler-Ryan and Riham Moussa.Read the investigations:Sanctioning an Oligarch Is Not So Easy: Why the Money Trail of Alisher Usmanov, One of Russia’s Wealthiest Men, Is Difficult to FollowOCCRP Russian Asset TrackerThis week’s guests:Miranda PatrucicIlya LozovskyKevin HollinrakeTranscript:Read the transcript on the OCCRP website.More information OCCRP:Keep up with the latest in global organized crime and corruption with our weekly newsletterDonate[00:00] Introduction[02:04] Miranda Patrucic explains why she is interested in investigating oligarchs — and Alisher Usmanov in particular[03:50] How did the investigation into Usmanov come about?[06:16] What are the FinCEN Files — and what did they reveal about Usmanov?[07:55] An explainer of suspicious activity reports and how they’re supposed to stop financial crime[10:36] How Usmanov’s family is connected to the story[13:04] Ilya Lozovsky explains how OCCRP told the story via the Russian Asset Tracker[15:36] Did Western sanctions against Usmanov work against him — and Vladimir Putin’s war effort in Ukraine?[19:00] Why have there been so many large-scale data leaks in recent years?[22:07] Kevin Hollinrake on whether tackling money laundering in the U.K. would harm the nation’s economy[25:45] Updates on how the U.K. is tackling flows of dirty money[27:33] What needs to be done to clamp down on dirty money in the U.K.?[33:55] Kevin Hollinrake on whether Western sanctions have been effective against the Russian invasion of Ukraine
5. Russian Meddling in Catalonia: A Playbook In Destabilization40:26A mysterious Russian offers Catalonia’s president $500 billion and 10,000 armed soldiers to make the break from Spain and create a cryptocurrency haven. This in the days running up to an historic vote to declare independence from Spain.In this episode, Nick Wallis talks with journalists Antonio Baquero, Marc Marginedas and Lorenzo Bagnoli on how they tracked down the man pro-independence leaders called “Putin’s envoy” across Spain, Italy, and Russia — unveiling his past as a Russian diplomat with a history of representing the Kremlin.We also hear from Institute for Statecraft senior fellow Nico de Pedro on how Russia used Catalonia’s independence movement in an attempt to destabilize Spain, as well as how ordinary Catalans felt when interference from the Kremlin was revealed.Dirty Deeds is a Little Gem production for OCCRP. The host is Nick Wallis. The producers were Lindsay Riley and Ollie Peart, with research from Phoebe Adler-Ryan and Riham Moussa, at Rethink Audio.Read the investigation:https://www.occrp.org/en/investigations/fueling-secession-promising-bitcoins-how-a-russian-operator-urged-catalonian-leaders-to-break-with-madridThis week’s guestsAntonio Baquero - @antoniobaqueroiMarc Marginedas - @marcmarginedasLorenzo Bagnoli - @Lorenzo_BagnoliNico de Pedro - @nicolasdepedroTranscriptRead the transcript on the OCCRP website.More Information on OCCRPKeep up with the latest in global organized crime and corruption with our weekly newsletter.Donate.[00:00] Introduction[03:40] Antonio Baquera and Marc Marginedas explain how they began investigating Russian interest in Catalonia[05:26] A profile of Victor Terredellas, key figure in the story[08:38] How “Putin’s envoy” Nikolai Sadovnikov came to reporters’ attention[11:52] Why are there ties between Catalonian independence leaders and the Russian government?[15:36] Lorenzo Bagnoli explains Sadovnikov’s past as a diplomat in Italy[20:41] A profile of Jordi Sardà Bonvehí, who accompanied Sadovnikov during his meeting with Catalonia’s separatist leader Carles Puigdemont[23:42] How the reporters managed to interview Sadovnikov[26:30] The effect of the story on the Catalonian independence movement, Italian mafia and Carlos Puigdemont[31:23] Nico de Pedro explains why he and others are against Catalonian independence[34:02] How the Catalonian independence movement is used by the Russian government to destabilize Spain[36:56] How do ordinary Catalans feel about Russian interference in Catalonian independence?
4. Exposing a Former Czech PM’s Offshore Finances33:51Pavla Holcová was greeted with an avalanche of threats when she woke up one morning. Her country’s former prime minister had publicly accused her of being a paid agent to undermine his re-election campaign.In this episode you’ll hear about the dangers OCCRP’s investigative journalists face when trying to get to the truth, the horrific abuse they face and how the OCCRP helps to protect them and their sources.Host Nick Wallis talks with Pavla and fellow OCCRP editor Pete Jones about how an investigation exposing ex-Czech PM Andrej Babiš’ undeclared overseas property deals led to a very public attack by the politician and media mogul. Pavla recounts her encounters with Babiš — and what kept her going in the face of horrific abuse from his supporters.We also hear from Prague-based journalist Will Nattrass on why Babiš is seen as a threat to press freedom, corruption in the Czech Republic, and where the country’s politics could head in the future.Dirty Deeds is a Little Gem production for OCCRP. The host is Nick Wallis. The producer is Lindsay Riley at Rethink Audio, with research from Phoebe Adler-Ryan and Riham Moussa.Read the investigation:Anti-Graft Czech Prime Minister Used Offshores to Disguise Funds for French ChateauThis week’s guests:Pavla Holcová - @pafakPete Jones - @PSJones01Will NattrassTranscript:Read the transcript on the OCCRP website hereMore information on OCCRP:Keep up with the latest in global organized crime and corruption with our weekly newsletterDonate[00:00] Introduction[02:23] Pavla Holcová and Pete Jones explain how their investigation into Andrej Babiš began[06:45] Pavla describes a public confrontation with Babiš[08:03] Pavla describes how Babiš targeted her on social media and what consequences she suffered[15:18] What kept Pavla going despite abuse from Babiš and his supporters[18:03] Pete explains what makes OCCRP distinct as a news organization[23:51] How OCCRP journalists prepare for and respond to threats[26:08] The consequence of the article for Babiš[27:11] Will Nattrass on Babiš, corruption and the direction of Czech politics
3. Bleeding Trees: Tracking Illegal Loggers in Namibia33:07John Grobler’s Namibian holiday led him on an unexpected journey tailing trucks and loggers to expose the interests behind illegal logging, a lucrative and illegal business making millions for Chinese companies and local elites.In this episode Nick Wallis traces OCCRP’s investigation into who is killing the last of Namibia’s protected rosewood trees. We also hear from OCCRP journalist Khadija Sharife on how the tragic destruction of these prized forests fits into the wider looting of Africa’s natural resources.Finally, sustainability expert Dr. Clemens von Doderer analyzes the causes of Namibia’s illegal logging and what needs to be done to put an end to deforestation.Dirty Deeds is a Little Gem production for OCCRP. The host is Nick Wallis. The producer is Lindsay Riley at Rethink Audio, with research from Phoebe Adler-Ryan and Riham Moussa.Read the investigations:Felling Namibia’s Ancient Giants‘They Are Finishing the Trees’: Chinese Companies and Namibian Elites Make Millions Illegally Logging the Last RosewoodsThis week’s guestsJohn Grobler - @JohnGrblrKhadija Sharife - @khadijasharifeDr. Clemens von DodererTranscriptRead the transcript on the OCCRP website hereMore information on OCCRPKeep up with the latest in global organized crime and corruption at OCCRP and sign up for our weekly newsletter.Follow on X, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn to get the latest updates.Support investigative journalism in the public interest. Donate to OCCRP.[00:00] Introduction[02:33] Khadija explains why she commissioned an investigation into Namibian rosewood[05:18] John gives a crash course on Namibia[06:20] Why Chinese demand for rosewood trees is increasing[08:03] Why and how John began investigating rosewood logging[13:38] An explainer on CITES and why it’s important for threatened species[16:13] How Namibia’s political and legal system fuels illegal logging[18:55] What it’s like to take on a government as a lone journalist[20:25] Can the redwoods be saved?[24:33] Dr Clemens von Doderer explains the causes of illegal logging in Namibia[27:26] How can illegal logging be stopped?
2. The Beirut Blast38:37How do you begin to investigate the explosion that tore through the Lebanese capital city of Beirut, killing more than 200 people? In this episode Nick Wallis takes us back to August 2020, talking to Rana Sabbagh and Aubrey Belford about how OCCRP reporters activated the global network to unravel the opaque web of secrecy behind the cause of the explosion, scouring the globe from Russia to Mozambique to track down the true owner of the deadly cargo that triggered the devastating blast in Lebanon’s capital.We also hear from Paul Najjar, who lived and worked less than a kilometer from the blast site at Beirut port. Paul and Tracy’s three-year-old daughter died as a result of injuries sustained in the explosion.Dirty Deeds a Little Gem production for the OCCRP. The host is Nick Wallis. The producer is Lindsay Riley at Rethink Audio, with research from Phoebe Adler-Ryan and Riham Moussa.Read the investigations:A Hidden Tycoon, African Explosives, and a Loan from a Notorious Bank: Questionable Connections Surround Beirut Explosion ShipmentOwnership of Chemicals that Exploded at Beirut Port Traces Back to UkraineThis week’s guests:Rana Sabbagh - @rana_sabbaghAubrey Belford - @AubreyBelfordPaul NaggearTranscriptRead the transcript on the OCCRP website here.More information on OCCRPKeep up with the latest in global organized crime and corruption at OCCRP and sign up for our weekly newsletter.Follow on X, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn to get the latest updates.Support investigative journalism in the public interest. Donate to OCCRP.[00:00] Introduction[01:21] Paul Naggear recounts the day of the explosion[10:53] Rana Sabbagh explains background and how the investigation began[16:57] Aubrey Belford explains why he volunteered to join the investigation[20:28] Rana describes the difficulties of reporting in the blast’s aftermath[24:03] Background on Lebanese politics[25:26] How reporters uncovered the opaque network of companies linked to the deadly cargo[30:32] Rana and Aubrey describe the impact of the investigation in Lebanon and the UK[32:38] Paul describes his campaign for justice
1. How Azerbaijan’s Ruling Family Launder Their Millions37:46How did an Azerbaijani boy end up owning a building in London’s Mayfair that housed a restaurant with two Michelin stars, an art gallery, and the Condé Nast headquarters?Hint: His father is the country’s president, Ilham Aliyev.When two of our top editors got hold of the Pandora Papers — a vast trove of leaked documents from offshore service providers — they knew it could provide key insights into how some of the most corrupt people in the world, including rulers of entire countries, hide their wealth.Miranda Patrucic and Ilya Lozovsky take you behind the scenes of their investigation, which revealed how Azerbaijan’s ruling Aliyev family acquired vast properties in London— and how they even used their children to do it. Dirty Deeds is a Little Gem production for OCCRP. The host is Nick Wallis. The producer is Lindsay Riley at Rethink Audio, with research from Phoebe Adler-Ryan and Riham Moussa.Read the investigation:Azerbaijan’s Ruling Aliyev Family and Their Associates Acquired Dozens of Prime London Properties Worth Nearly $700 Million(The Pandora Papers is a project based on a leak of offshore documents obtained by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and shared with OCCRP and other media outlets.)This week’s guestsMiranda Patrucic - @MirandaOCCRP Ilya Lozovsky - @ichbinilyaOliver Bullough - @OliverBulloughTranscriptRead the transcript on the OCCRP website here.More information on OCCRP:Keep up with the latest in global organized crime and corruption at OCCRP and sign up for our weekly newsletter.Follow on X, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn to get the latest updates.Support investigative journalism in the public interest. Donate to OCCRP..