Featured Syria

By Suitcase And By Wire: How Reza Zarrab Smuggled Russia’s Money

By Tom Stocks, Daniela Castro, Kelly Bloss and Adam Klasfeld, OCCRP, 20 September 2020 OCCRP — Best known for laundering billions of dollars for Iran, notorious gold smuggler Reza Zarrab’s ties to Russia received only passing mention when he was prosecuted in the U.S. in 2016. That was a huge… Read More

Criminals increasingly targeting EU green funds, says anti-fraud agency

Fraudsters in Europe are increasingly targeting European Union funds intended for environmental and sustainable projects. It came as the bloc planned to unlock €1 trillion in green investments over the coming years. In its latest report released on Thursday, the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) said that it concluded 181 investigations… Read More

A hidden tycoon, African explosives, and a loan from a notorious bank: questionable connections surround Beirut explosion shipment

OCCRP – Since the devastating explosion of a store of ammonium nitrate in Beirut’s port on August 4, Lebanese citizens have taken to the streets in shock, outrage, and grief. Above all, they have demanded answers: Where did the nearly 3,000 tons of explosive chemicals come from, and who… Read More
21st August 2020
The United States on Wednesday imposed sanctions on two United Arab Emirates-based companies, the U.S. Treasury Department said, accusing them of providing material support to Iranian airline Mahan Air. The Treasury in a statement said Parthia Cargo and Delta Parts Supply FZC provided key parts and logistics services for Mahan… Read More
17th August 2020
The Justice Department announced Thursday it had seized millions of dollars’ worth of cryptocurrency meant to fund terrorist groups such as al-Qaeda and the Islamic State, in what law enforcement officials called an unprecedented crackdown against terrorist fundraising on social media. In addition to seizing funds, U.S. officials said they… Read More
7th August 2020
The U.S. designation last week of a new Turkey-based member of the notorious Rawi Network for allegedly facilitating money transfers to the Islamic State (IS) in Syria has raised fresh concerns among observers that jihadists continue to use Turkey to fund their activities in Syria. The Rawi Network, founded by… Read More
6th August 2020
At first glance, the shipping trailers that arrived at the Italian port of Salerno appeared to contain only paper, rolled up on giant industrial spools as tall as a man. But when an investigator sliced into one of the rolls with an electric saw, he unleashed an avalanche of little… Read More
30th July 2020
The UK’s top sanctions regulator has issued landmark guidance for all companies involved in maritime trade, instructing them to pay closer attention to vessel behaviour, company structures and potentially forged documents. The Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI) warns that “a variety of tactics are deployed to confuse or conceal… Read More
30th July 2020
The U.S. placed sanctions on a son of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and a Syrian military unit in an effort by the Trump administration to pressure the country’s regime to end a civil war. Wednesday’s actions by the U.S. Treasury Department and the U.S. State Department, which included the blacklisting… Read More
28th July 2020
Syrian businessman Rami Makhlouf revealed on Sunday he had set up a web of offshore front companies to help President Bashar al Assad evade Western sanctions, in a social media post blasting the government for investigating his business empire. One of Syria’s richest and most powerful businessmen, Makhlouf said security… Read More
27th July 2020
Bribing one politician is bad. Bribing all the politicians is worse. The U.S. Department of Justice is investigating a group of companies in Kurdistan, Iraq’s semi-independent northern region, that appears to be doing the latter in order to secure a monopoly on Pentagon fuel contracts worth hundreds of… Read More
21st July 2020
New U.S. sanctions targeting the Syrian government appear to also undermine Hezbollah in Lebanon. Experts say the measures are alienating Hezbollah from its political allies in Lebanon and weakening its usage of state institutions to assist the Syrian regime. The sanctions, introduced on June 17 and known as the Caesar… Read More
20th July 2020
The leaders of France, Germany and Italy on Saturday threatened for the first time to use sanctions against countries that continued to violate a United Nations arms embargo on Libya. French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte urged “all foreign actors to end… Read More