Editor’s Note: The following investigation was conducted by the Washington, D.C.-based Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project, a Kyiv Post partner.
Three years ago, the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project exposed the “Russian Laundromat” – an immense financial fraud scheme that enabled vast sums to be pumped out of Russia. The money was laundered and moved into Europe and beyond through bribery and a clever exploitation of the Moldovan legal system.
Recently, OCCRP and Novaya Gazeta obtained detailed banking records for more than 120 accounts that made up the Laundromat. We shared the data with dozens of reporters from around the world who tracked down the money locally. The results are “The Russian Laundromat Exposed” – a new project which reveals far more about how the scheme worked and where the money went. The stories below explain how more than $20.8 billion was taken out of Russia and laundered, who got the money, and why some of the world’s largest banks failed to shut the scheme down.