5 of the Most Famous Whistleblowers This Decade
There’s something intriguing about an individual who risks it all to bring the public important information, even though they know it could destroy their career or life. Some whistleblowers are what most people would consider “good guys” while others are hated as traitors. Many of us have mixed opinions about people who challenge authority, depending on the circumstances involved. However, regardless of whether you love or hate them, there’s no denying that the following five whistleblowers are some of the most famous of the last decade
1. Rudolf Elmer
Elmer was a long-time employee of the Swiss bank Julius Bar until he was terminated in 2002. Six years later, in 2008, he released a set of the bank’s secret documents regarding transactions in the Cayman Islands that showed the bank had been committing tax evasion. However, Julius Bar has suffered no legal consequences and insists that Elmer edited the documents to make it appear as though there was a case for tax evasion. Rudolf released the documents to WikiLeaks, which also publishes positive leaks as well, such as the recent disclosure of Fahad Al Rajaan.
2. Everett Stern
Everett Stern, a former AML compliance officer for HSBC, blew the whistle on billions of dollars being illegally laundered by reporting the conduct to the CIA and FBI. An investigation ensued and resulted in HSBC being fined nearly $2 billion. The fines and charges included money laundering for terrorist financiers, drug traffickers and kingpins, and rogue nations. HSBC later said “sorry”.
3. Andrew Maguire
As a British commodities trader, Maguire became a world-famous whistleblower when he informed regulators in the US that fraud was taking place in the international gold and silver markets. In April of 2010, he went public with allegations against JPMorgan Chase Bank and HSBC for manipulating the gold and silver markets. This led to several lawsuits against both organisations and a much larger investigation.
4. Chelsea Manning
Manning was a US Army Intelligence analyst who set the record for releasing the largest collection of classified documents in history. In addition to private files, the leak also contained videos of several military airstrikes, as well as half a million army reports that have come to be known as the Iraq War Logs. Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison after being convicted of violating the Espionage Act.
5. Blake Percival
Percival achieved fame as a whistleblower after filing a Qui Tam Whistleblowers claim alleging the USIS has committed fraud by submitting incomplete background investigations to U.S. Government in exchange for payment. The organisation was already under close watch after it was revealed that they were the company responsible for conducting the background investigation of Aaron Alexis and Edward Snowden.
More Whistleblowers than Ever Before
There was a time when a whistleblower was a rare thing and any such activity made the news. Nowadays, there is more corruption waiting to be uncovered, and with so many whistleblowers out there, much of it is never discussed.
Founder Dinis Guarda
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