CMDS's Starkman Serves as Senior Editor of Luanda Leaks

Journalists of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) revealed the story of how Africa’s wealthiest woman moved hundreds of millions of dollars in public money out of one of the poorest countries on the planet.

Six weeks after the China Cables, ICIJ published its new project, Luanda Leaks, that explores the origins of the fortune of Isabel dos Santos, daughter of Angola's former longtime president and Africa's richest woman. A leaked trove of financial and business records revealed the inside story of how she moved hundreds of millions of dollars in public money out of one of the poorest countries on the planet and into a labyrinth of companies and subsidiaries, many of them in offshore secrecy jurisdictions around the world.

More than 120 journalists have worked on the story for more than eight months, across borders and continents. Dean Starkman, Fellow at the Center for Media, Data and Society served as senior editor in the project.

“Luanda Leaks is more than a story about corruption in a small African country, it’s much more a commentary for an expose of the global financial system, without which such activities would not be possible. It takes a village of lawyers, consultants and financial advisers to make this kind of wealth transfers possible” he said.

Dean Starkman has worked as an investigative reporter for more than two decades, and he has won many awards for his writing on finance, media, and the business of news in an age of digital disruption. He covered white-collar crime and real estate for The Wall Street Journal and helped lead the Providence Journal's investigative team to a Pulitzer Prize in 1994. Later he worked as the Wall Street correspondent for the Los Angeles Times, reporting on the intersection of finance and society from New York. He is the author of The Watchdog That Didn't Bark: The Financial Crisis and the Disappearance of Investigative Journalism (Columbia University Press, 2014), an acclaimed analysis of business-press failures prior to the 2008 financial crisis.

He was also part of the ICIJ team working on two previous projects, China Cables and Paradise Papers.