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Latest Investigations from Albania

lawless-lake-ex-smugglers-find-new-fish-to-fry-11-27-2017
04 Dec 17

Lawless Lake: Ex-Smugglers Find New Fish to Fry

On the biggest lake in the Balkans, rangers say it is easier to catch a drug trafficker than a poacher amid warnings of ecological disaster.

montenegro-s-open-secret-illegal-gender-tests-for-unborns-09-27-2017
28 Sep 17

Montenegro’s Open Secret: Illegal Gender-Tests for Unborns

Genetic testing to find out the sex of an unborn baby is illegal in Montenegro, but it is not unusual in a society that values boys over girls - and for clinics, it’s a profitable business.

tirana-offloads-ancient-arms-to-controversial-broker-03-30-2017
31 Mar 17

Tirana Offloads Ancient Arms to Controversial Broker

Albania sold part of its vast stockpiles of aging weapons and ammunition to a controversial Bulgarian firm linked to a deadly explosion which killed a Pentagon contractor.

an-albanian-war-on-drugs-11-15-2016
16 Nov 16

An Albanian War on Drugs

Albania is uprooting cannabis at an unprecedented rate, but endemic corruption and a failure to target the kingpins behind a multi-billion-euro industry give the lie to the NATO member’s ‘war on drugs’.

spike-in-special-merit-citizenships-raises-eyebrows-in-albania-09-19-2016
21 Sep 16

Spike in ‘Special Merit’ Citizenships Raises Eyebrows in Albania

The recent awarding of citizenship to six Kosovo politicians has triggered a debate over the Albanian President’s discretionary right to hand out these important privileges.

making-a-killing-the-1-2-billion-euros-arms-pipeline-to-middle-east-07-26-2016
27 Jul 16

Making a Killing: The 1.2 Billion Euro Arms Pipeline to Middle East

An unprecedented flow of weapons from Central and Eastern Europe is flooding the battlefields of the Middle East.

contract-with-a-gangster-infamous-underworld-figure-hired-to-solve-property-dispute-06-15-2016
20 Jun 16

Albanian Businessman Mulls Cost of 'Gangster's Aid

Stymied by Albania’s ineffective court system for over a decade, a local businessman who turned to a reputed gangster to resolve a legal matter may have paid a steep price.

the-integrity-gap-albania-s-appeals-court-judges-asset-disclosures-raise-red-flags-06-16-2016
17 Jun 16

The Integrity Gap: Albania’s Appeals Court Judges Asset Disclosures Raise Red Flags

Nearly 80 per cent of Albania’s appeals court judges have apparent financial discrepancies and cannot justify their wealth in one or more years during their judicial careers according to a BIRN analysis of asset declarations.

company-linked-to-organized-crime-eyes-albanian-arms-factory-06-12-2016-1
13 Jun 16

Company Linked To Organized Crime Eyes Albanian Arms Factory

A Bulgarian company with ties to organized crime is in the process of securing a lease to a Communist-era weapons factory in the small Albanian town of Polican.

quarries-make-hellish-mess-of-albania-s-holy-mountain-05-16-2016
18 May 16

Quarries Make Hellish Mess of Albania’s Holy Mountain

Dozens of quarrying companies are devastating the pristine alpine pastures of Albania’s Mt Tomorri – a sacred site, which is supposed to be a national park enjoying state protection.

albania-ignoring-suspected-drug-baron-s-greek-arrest-warrant-05-16-2016
16 May 16

Albania ‘Ignoring’ Suspected Drug Baron’s Greek Arrest Warrant

Greek police documents seen by BIRN shows that Athens suspects an Albanian official and prominent businessman of heading a major drugs trafficking ring – however, Albanian police have yet to arrest him.

albania-s-gora-minority-takes-bulgarian-route-to-eu-04-18-2016
18 Apr 16

Albania’s Gora Minority Takes Bulgarian Route to EU

Members of a small community of obscure origin in northern Albania are applying in droves for Bulgarian passports, seeking a new life in the European Union.

balkan-energy-moguls-financial-woes-deepen-10-06-2016
18 Mar 16

Balkan Energy Moguls’ Financial Woes Deepen

The future of a planned multimillion-euro oil and gas terminal in Albania is now in doubt as the owners, high-profile Balkan businessmen Vojin Lazarevic and Damir Fazlic, face multiple debt recovery and repossession orders.

rama-s-albania-rows-back-on-transparency-pledges-02-16-2016
17 Feb 16

Rama’s Albania Rows Back on Transparency Pledges

Despite passing two innovative laws in 2014, the centre-left government has not honoured its commitments to open up institutions to scrutiny.

albania-pays-price-for-politically-motivated-sackings-02-05-2016
08 Feb 16

Albania Pays Price For Politically Driven Sackings

Despite the passage of laws designed to stop it, the practice of summarily sacking civil servants continues in Albania, burdening the budget and creating misery for those let go.