Montenegro Paper Wrong about OCCRP

Pobjeda, a government-owned and controlled newspaper in Montenegro, published a series of stories in July 2012 regarding OCCRP and its editor Drew Sullivan.  These stories appeared in the days following publication of OCCRP’s project First Family, First Bank about the bank owned by Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic. 

The Pobjeda stories are near complete fabrications and highly libelous.  The primary source for the stories was Senad Pecanin, formerly the owner and editor of Dani Magazine, who has a history of privately motivated attacks on Sullivan.  These stem from a time when Sullivan worked as a media development specialist and cut off funding for Pecanin’s publication. One of the stories published by Pobjeda was a reprint of a Dani article.

OCCRP understands that certain media and media owners in the region are prone to unethical behavior and poor professional standards. Publications are frequently subject to misuse by their owners for personal or political attacks.  Both the Pobjeda and Dani stories on OCCRP and its editor are examples of such misuse.

OCCRP is an internationally recognized, award winning organization that must meet the highest standards of quality and transparency demanded by international donors. OCCRP is very familiar with media in the region, its ties to political parties and organized crime, and expects such attacks. We will continue to meet and refute all unfair attacks against our credibility.