“We should talk about HSBC.” Russian money laundering & media complicity.

 

 

There has been much in the news recently about the “Troika Laundromat” – a new batch of information released by the OCCRP (The Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project). This follows on from the Russian Laundromat, reported in 2017 when even the Guardian revealed HSBC involvement1:

The OCCRP’s two British partners are the Guardian2 and BBC3, who both duly reported on the new scandal:

 

I was surprised therefore to find a complete absence of any mention of HSBC. Particularly as a quick Google search shows that HSBC were agent partners of Troika Dialog, the bank at the centre of the scandal4

On Twitter I stated that  it was impossible that HSBC were not involved:

And 2 hours later, knowing as I do the extent of HSBC crimes in Russia (particularly in connection to the Browder/Magnitsky myth) I asked OCCRP directly on Twitter why HSBC had not been mentioned:

I was therefore amazed to get this reply from Friedrich Lindenberg, who describes himself as a data guy, working for OCCRP.

Unfortunately it appears Friedrich slipped up. I asked him how he would like me to blog about his tweet, as I didn’t wish him to get into trouble, but he became defensive and ended saying “you’re a more eager player of the „intimidating journalists“ game than many a mobster we write about”.

Thinking that we will never hear about HSBC involvement in the Troika Laundromat I tweeted the editor of OCCRP and surprisingly he replied too. So I will monitor the situation. It will be interesting to see, if they do release the data, which outlets in the UK report it.

1. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/mar/20/british-banks-handled-vast-sums-of-laundered-russian-money

2. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/mar/04/how-prince-charles-stately-home-restoration-linked-him-with-russian-money-troika-laundromat

3. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-47441113

4. http://rubenvardanyan.info/uploads/issue/file_en/46/trNews_02eng.pdf

Header image by Teacher Dude