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 "finance" ...

  • Home Sweet Hustle

    For 15 years, the Portland nonprofit Give Us This Day occupied a unique place among foster-care agencies in the state of Oregon. Its four group homes served the most troubled, challenging kids in the state—children who had been sexually abused, starved, beaten and abandoned. It was the state’s only African-American-run foster care agency, a distinction that made it especially valuable to the state agency that manages housing for foster children, the Oregon Department of Human Services. The executive director of Give Us This Day, Mary Holden, was lauded as a human-rights champion. Give Us This Day was also unique in how leniently it was regulated by state officials. The state turned a blind eye to more than 1,000 police reports at foster homes run by Give Us This Day. It regularly paid large cash advances to the provider—something no other foster-care agency requested so regularly. And the Department of Human Services ignored years of allegations that Give Us This Day neglected children.
  • Isis Inc

    The FT’s 'Isis Inc' series is the most difficult, important and revelatory investigation the Financial Times has done in years. It exposed for the first time how the jihadis raise - and spend - their money and run their affairs. It also underlined the failure of the western air campaign to dent its organization and revenues. The power of the reporting was reinforced by a host of telling graphics and interactives. “How oil fuels terrorists” was our most read story of the year.
  • Campaign Finance Questions

    To date, our investigation has uncovered irregularities and possible violations of state campaign law in the campaign finance reports of XXX members of the North Carolina General Assembly. Our investigation continues. Recently, we reported that our questions have prompted an inquiry by the FBI. https://youtu.be/HJ9ZS2TZZQk
  • APS employee drafted anti-solar letter signed by AZ congressmen

    A fight that’s been brewing for years between Arizona’s largest, monopoly energy utility and third-party solar companies has largely taken place behind the scenes or at the state’s energy regulating commission. But in late 2014, Arizona Public Service used its political connections to get members of Arizona’s congressional delegation to sign letters urging the Federal Trade Commission and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to scrutinize and possibly penalize the solar companies over allegations of wrongdoing. What was left out of the letters is that they were written by an Arizona Public Service employee, and that the utility had also previously pumped tens of thousands of dollars into the campaign coffers of those congressmen and congresswomen. The Arizona Center for Investigative Reporting used digital breadcrumbs combined with traditional shoe-leather reporting to uncover this classic case of pay-to-play political maneuvering.
  • Sprawl Developer Won't Take No For an Answer

    This was a two-person investigation into political corruption, environmental damage, public danger and regulatory capture presented by a developer’s attempt to build a suburban sprawl project in rural San Diego County. We spent two months diving into lawsuits, environmental reports, wildfire warnings and campaign finance disclosures to understand how billion-dollar real estate developments take shape outside of public eye, even if they contradict adopted regulatory guidelines. It resulted in an elected official, poised to enrich himself by voting in favor of the project, being forced to recuse himself from voting, which led to the project’s indefinite suspension.
  • Campaign Contributions and the California State Board of Equalization

    Taxpayers with complex tax dispute cases before the State Board of Equalization were more likely to win their cases if they or their representatives made campaign contributions to the elected board members, either directly or through political action committees.
  • Comrade Capitalism

    In these investigations, Reuters revealed how Putin’s daughter secretly married the son of an old friend of the president; how Putin’s new son-in-law went on to acquire a stake worth $2.85 billion in Russia’s biggest petrochemical processor; how that stake was financed by a cheap loan from a bank run by associates of Putin; and how the petrochemical company is now benefiting from $1.75 billion in cheap state finance. While much has been written about other Russian billionaires, no one has previously succeeded in shedding so much light on the finances of the president’s family. Former KGB officer Putin has long claimed to be a man of modest means, a frugal figure atop the former communist country now plundered by crony capitalism. http://www.reuters.com/investigates/section/comrade-capitalism-2015/
  • The Narco-Terror Trap

    This project traces the Drug Enforcement Administration’s use of a little-known statute of the Patriot Act to create a role for itself in the war on terror, based largely on unsubstantiated assertions that terrorists were using the drug trade to finance attacks against the United States. The statute, adopted with broad bi-partisan support, allows the D.E.A. to pursue so-called narco-terrorists anywhere in the world, even when none of their alleged crimes occurred on American soil. Between 2002 and 2008, the agency’s budget for foreign operations increased by some 75 percent, which supported expansions into Afghanistan, Eastern Europe, and West Africa. But an examination of the D.E.A.’s narco-terrorism cases reveals that most unraveled as they proceeded through court. The cases relied heavily on sting operations, and the only evidence of any links between terrorists and traffickers was concocted by the D.E.A., which used highly-paid informants to lure targets into staged narco-terrorism conspiracies. The first piece tells the story of three small-time smugglers from Mali who were arrested in West Africa, transported to New York and accused as narco-terrorists with links to Al-Qaeda. It explains how the D.E.A.’s narco-terrorism campaign began in the arrest-first-ask-questions-later period that followed 9/11. And it details the negligible contributions that the effort, whose total cost remains unknown, has made to keeping the country safe from either terrorists or drug traffickers. Nearly three years after the Malian’s arrest, a judge found that the men were not linked to Al-Qaeda, and that they had been motivated to participate in the D.E.A.’s fake conspiracy by an informant’s offer to pay them millions of dollars. The second piece uses an interactive comic – ProPublica’s first – to bring a sharper focus to the patterns in the DEA’s cases. It uses five different narco-terrorism operations in five different parts of the world. The interactivity of the comic allows readers to see how the agency’s stings use essentially the same script in order to make disparate targets fit the designated crime. https://projects.propublica.org/graphics/narco
  • Allentown FBI investigation

    On July 2, FBI agents raided Allentown City Hall, looking for documents connected with a host of businesses and other entities that received city contracts. It was clear that agents suspected a pay-to-play scheme had been in the works for several years. The first thing The Morning Call’s city hall reporter, Emily Opilo, did was cancel her plans for the Fourth of July holiday, since she knew this story needed her complete attention. For the next six months, Opilo – along with reporters Scott Kraus, Matt Assad and Paul Muschick – scrutinized each entity on the FBI’s subpoena list. Going contractor by contractor, they used the state’s Right-to-Know Law to gather bid sheets, requests for proposals, meeting notes and contracts. Using state and federal campaign finance reports, they matched each contractor against contributions made to Allentown’s mayor when he ran for re-election in 2013, for governor in 2014 and for U.S. Senate in 2015. In each case, contractors also were donors. Often, those that didn’t get contracts were found not to have donated to the mayor’s campaigns.
  • Private Risk

    In a year-long series, The Wall Street Journal exposed and analyzed the underbelly of Silicon Valley’s technology boom with powerful reporting that triggered action by federal regulators, the nation’s largest drugstore chain and major retailers. Among the many highlights was an expose of blood-testing firm Theranos Inc., detailing how the nation’s largest private health-care company hit technological snags—with employees filing complaints with regulatory agencies alleging the company concealed problems—as it performed millions of blood tests on patients. The articles selected here—from dozens of stories, infographics and videos in the Journal’s “Private Risk” series—also revealed how technology firms fudge their finances; how private tech shares are improperly traded in a shadowy market; and how millions of American own shares of private tech firms through their mutual funds with no idea about what they’re actually worth.