Interview

[VIDEO] The Story behind Panama Papers - Interview with Frederik Obermaier and Bastian Obermayer

Tuesday 10 December 2019 09:24 CET | Editor: Mirela Ciobanu | Interview

During RiskConnect, a conference organised by Web Shield and dedicated to payment risk professionals, The Paypers interviewed investigative journalists Frederik Obermaier and Bastian Obermayer to find out more about the story behind the Panama Papers.

The Panama Papers confirmed that shell companies and offshore structures were being used to hide identities, evade tax, and launder money on a grand scale.

In 2015, an anonymous whistle-blower led the two investigative journalists into the shadow economy where the super-rich hide billions of dollars in complex financial networks. The 2015 leak of the Panama Papers comprised 11.5 million files from the database of the world’s fourth largest offshore legal and corporate services company, Mossack Fonseca in Panama. The firm enabled end-clients to hold property and bank accounts anonymously. This included politically exposed persons or PEPs (e.g. members of president Putin’s circle and the Syrian president’s financial fixer), sanctioned individuals, businesspeople, organised crime syndicates and celebrities.

About Frederik Obermaier

Frederik Obermaier is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist and author. He writes for the Süddeutsche Zeitung and has worked on several high-profile investigations, including the so-called Lux Leaks, Offshore Leaks, Swiss Leaks and Paradise Papers.

In 2017, he won a Pulitzer Prize for his work with Bastian Obermayer and the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists on the Panama Papers. His work has received accolades internationally, including the CNN Award, the Wächter Prize, the Henri-Nannen Prize and the George Polk Award. He was named ‘German Journalist of the Year, 2016’ (with Obermayer), and in 2017 was awarded the prestigious Nieman Fellowship at Harvard University.

Obermaier is the author of several books, among others ‘Hooded Men – The History of the Ku Klux Klan in Germany’ as well as the international bestseller ‘The Panama Papers’, now a major motion picture.

About Bastian Obermayer

Bastian Obermayer is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter and the head of the investigative department at Süddeutsche Zeitung. After seven years at Süddeutsche Zeitung Magazine, he joined the investigative team where he worked on the so-called Lux Leaks, Offshore Leaks, Swiss Leaks, Panama Papers and Paradise Papers.

Obermayer has received numerous national and international prizes for his work including the Pulitzer Prize, the Georg Polk Award, the Henri Nannen Prize, the Theodor Wolff Prize and the German Reporter Award — he was named ‘Business Journalist of the Year, 2014’ as well as ‘Journalist of the Year, 2016’ (with Obermaier). In 2016 he was awarded the prestigious Knight Wallace Fellowship.

Obermayer is the author of several books, the subjects of which include abuse in the German monastery Ettal, fraud in the German automotive industry and, again with Obermaier, the international bestseller ‘The Panama Papers’.


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Keywords: RiskConnect, money laundering, risk management, risk professionals, tax evasion, offshore companies, shell companies, Web Shield, Frederik Obermaier, Bastian Obermayer
Categories: Securing Transactions | Digital Identity, Security & Online Fraud
Countries: World
This article is part of category

Securing Transactions