Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "tourism" ...

  • OCCRP: Paradise Leased: The Theft of the Maldives

    Maldives tourism isn’t all swaying palm trees and white sand beaches. The truth is something far uglier. Thanks to a trove of leaked files, OCCRP reporters have uncovered the details of an audacious multi-million dollar scheme that saw dozens of Maldivian islands leased out to developers in no-bid deals — and the money then stolen. While local tycoons and international investors cashed in, the people of this island paradise in the Indian Ocean saw precious little. The revelations also include fresh evidence that implicates the Maldives’ authoritarian president, Abdulla Yameen, in the scandal.
  • Shrinking Shores

    The Naples Daily News explored the state of Florida’s beaches, and how little the state invests in this important asset at a time when development is allowed at a rapid pace. The project found the lack of investment has resulted in much of the state’s coastline receding and local governments are burdened with managing erosion. Even though beaches generate billions annually for the state in tourism-related sales taxes, Florida's lawmakers and governors typically return less than $1 to the shore each year for every $100 they take. Part 1: http://www.naplesnews.com/story/news/special-reports/2016/11/11/shrinking-shores-how-florida-leaders-failing-states-famous-beaches/92052156/
  • Hattiesburg taxpayers fund liquor, jewelry, and gifts

    WDAM uncovered misspending of taxpayer dollars at the Hattiesburg Tourism Commission. In summary, the city imposes an extra two percent tax on restaurant food purchases in the city to help fund tourism in the area. That money was instead spent on luxury items such as Tiffany jewelry and family vacations by the executive director and several people working for him. https://vimeo.com/151837779 http://www.wdam.com/story/28416053/investigation-hattiesburg-taxpayers-fund-liquor-jewelry-and-gifts
  • Councilmen on Tourism

    With the help of a hidden camera, this RBS-TV/Globo TV investigation of city council members in seven Brazilian states shows how many politicians were skipping taxpayer-funded seminars and classes to vacation instead.
  • Councilmen on Tourism

    The RBS-TV news crew followed city council members from seven Brazilian states as they attended 6 training courses over 40 days. They found that many of them enjoyed tourist day trips instead of the courses they were supposed to be attending. They also found that the politicians could purchase certificates of completion even when they did not attend the courses.
  • Space Florida

    A new agency, Space Florida, was created in the state of Florida to find innovative ways to help those who were losing their jobs and create alternative business. But an investigation into the agency revealed that it was creating more controversy than helping. Some of these include things like spending huge amounts of money without return, stealing ideas, not creating jobs because they didn’t track it, and awarding contracts to those later convicted of crimes.
  • Biggest Nonprofit Fraud of our Time

    Sandy Frost uncovers a network of prostitution, human trafficking and child sex tourism in the secret Masonic subgroup, the Royal Order of Jesters (ROJ). Frost found that Jester groups paid for prostitution rooms and the society was linked to Richard Schair, a former fishing tour operator who brought North American into the Amazon for sex with minor, Indigenous girls.
  • Unconventional Spending

    After a six month investigation, Reporter C. S. Murphy reported for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette that the "Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau spends more than twice as much money as a tytpical city tourism agency but can't show the public what it's getting in return for its money." Murphy also finds "The bureau's regular annual audits have repeatedly called for tighter spending controls and more accountability."
  • Councilmen on Tourism Spree

    Local councilmen in Brazil were collecting per diems paid out to enable politicians to attend qualification courses presented in other countries. Using a hidden camera, the reporter passed himself off as a politician as the others admitted they were only signing up for these courses to collect the money while skipping the classes and taking a vacation. As a result of the investigation, many city councils in the southern Brazil state of Rio Grande do Sul cut back the payments.
  • Pulling G's

    This investigation looks at the G forces riders experience on thrill rides at central Florida theme parks. The parks have resisted releasing such information, so Florida Today measured them, developing data using a 3-axis accelerometer. Despite much concern, the rides were within established safety limits.