Editor's Picks

The Steinmetz Scandals – OCCRP

Mining magnate Beny Steinmetz earned a reputation as a titan in the diamond world, and then cemented his fortune with a multibillion-dollar deal over coveted iron ore deposits.

But his penchant for high-risk deals has brought his flagship firm, Beny Steinmetz Group Resources, to its knees, and left him trying to fight off two criminal convictions: one in Switzerland for bribery; and another in Romania, for forming “an organized criminal group” in a disputed land deal. He denies any wrongdoing.

As Steinmetz awaits his appeal decision in Switzerland’s supreme court in his bribery case, OCCRP investigated his career. We interviewed dozens of people and pored over thousands of corporate and legal documents to tell the story of how he ended up in the crosshairs of prosecutors and business rivals, and what happened next.

We found that as his legal woes went from bad to worse, Steinmetz’s firms struck five deals with companies owned by one man: former hedge-fund boss Sabby Mionis. The deals proved key to Steinmetz’s fight-back.

There is no suggestion or evidence that Mionis – or his companies or directors – did anything illegal. However, he did seize the opportunities presented as Steinmetz was seeking to escape the consequences of his alleged corruption.

Both businessmen say the deals were at arm’s length and offered their own commercial explanations. The ultimate results are clear: they helped Steinmetz in his battles, as creditors and law enforcement came after him. OCCRP has laid out the facts, and the complex strategies Steinmetz and his firms put in place after his mining scandal erupted.

Lawyers for Mionis said he “did not help ‘shield’ Mr. Steinmetz, or ‘fight his battles’ at any point. Their investment decisions were made based on the merits of each investment.”

Journalists: Daniel Balint-Kurti (OCCRP), Attila Biro (OCCRP/Context.ro), Saska Cvetkovska (Investigative Reporting Lab), Aleksandra Denkovska Gocevska (Investigative Reporting Lab), Aboubacar Akoumba Diallo (Le Petit Député, Guinea), Kevin G. Hall (OCCRP), Khadija Sharife (OCCRP), Paul Radu (OCCRP)

“24 saat”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button