Featured Albania

Above the Law: How a Wealthy Indian Family Evaded Justice

By Lindita Çela and Ushinor Majumdar, OCCRP, 8 June 2021 OCCRP — On a mild afternoon in March 2019, one of India’s most ostentatiously wealthy families prepared to board their private jet at Albania’s Tirana International Airport. The Sandesaras had been on the run since 2017, when… Read More

U.S. ‘Modernizes’ Sanctions Policy For Western Balkans To Go After Corruption

The United States is “modernizing” its sanctions policy in the Western Balkans by further targeting corruption, human rights abuses, and acts that threaten democracy in the region, the State Department said. “The United States recognizes that corruption threatens economic equity, global anti-poverty and development efforts, and democracy itself,” Secretary… Read More

Albania Investigates Unexplained Wealth of Chief Judge Over TikTok Videos

Albania’s Inspector of Justice on Monday ordered an investigation into Enkeleda Kapedani, the chief judge on the Elbasan Circuit in central Albania, after several videos of her posing in designer clothing were published by a TikTok account. One video shows Kapedani, 37, posing in her office while another shows her… Read More
27th May 2021
Albania has failed to significantly improve measures to combat money laundering and terrorist financing in line with the recommendations set down by the FATF. This is according to MONEYVAL, the Council of Europe unit that deals with financial crime and its prevention in the Member States. Following an assessment made… Read More
24th May 2021
On May 12th, prosecutors in North Macedonia charged Nikola Gruevski, the country’s former prime minister, with money-laundering. It is alleged that he funnelled cash donated to his party through Belize to buy property illegally and conceal its ownership. He says the case is politically motivated. Meanwhile in Jahorina, a popular… Read More
20th May 2021
AP — The United States on Wednesday sanctioned former Albanian Prime Minister Sali Berisha for alleged “significant corruption” and barred him and his wife and children from entering the U.S. Berisha, 76, who also served as Albania’s president from 1992 to 1997, is currently a lawmaker representing… Read More
17th May 2021
The real estate and construction sectors are being used to launder illicit money from the drugs trade and migrant trafficking in the Western Balkans, leading to a hike in property prices, according to a report by the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organised Crime. Laundering money through construction and real estate… Read More
11th May 2021
The migrant-smuggling business in Western Balkan countries is worth at least 50 million euros a year, the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime NGO said in a report published on Monday. The report assesses the money being made by smugglers in the three key smuggling zones in the Western… Read More
26th April 2021
Turkey issued an international arrest warrant on Friday for the founder of a cryptocurrency exchange who fled with a reported $2 billion in investors’ assets, state media reported. Police also detained 62 people in raids over their alleged links to Thodex, the company headed by the fugitive businessman Faruk Fatih… Read More
20th April 2021
By Besar Likmeta, Edmond Hoxhaj and Perparim Isufi, BIRN, 20 April 2021 BIRN – At first glance, Michigan resident Ylli Didani was a successful businessman with stakes in companies in the United States, Albania and Kosovo, where he enjoyed a business relationship with a former security aide… Read More
13th April 2021
The UK government has added Pakistan to the list of undesirable 21 high-risk countries with unsatisfactory money laundering and terrorist financing controls. This list of 21 countries — released by the UK Government — replicates the list of countries named by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) as high-risk or… Read More
12th April 2021
At 5am on a chilly Tuesday morning last month, 1,600 police officers and balaclava-wearing special forces, bristling with arms and battering rams, were ordered into action around the Belgian port city of Antwerp. More than 200 addresses were raided in what was the largest police operation ever conducted in the… Read More
15th March 2021
Military uniforms, rifle scopes, combat boots, tactical gear, firearms accessories and range finders: these were just some of the items that were bought with money that Ramiz Zijad Hodzic, a man from Bosnia and Herzegovina who was living in the United States, was convicting of raising for terrorist fighters in… Read More