What is the Ericsson List investigation?

Ericsson List

Telecom giant Ericsson made tens of millions of dollars in suspicious payments in Iraq, financing slush funds, trips abroad for defense officials and pay-offs to local corporate executives and for transports through terrorist-held areas, according to an extraordinary internal investigation obtained by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and shared with global media partners.


The investigation is based on an internal Ericsson review leaked to ICIJ and shared with a collaboration of more than 110 journalists from 30 partners in 22 countries. It documents a pattern of bribery and corruption so widespread, and company oversight so weak, that millions of dollars in Ericsson payments simply couldn’t be accounted for.

Ignoring warnings from within the company about the growing danger, Ericsson continued to operate in Iraq as politically-connected militants were paid off, millions of dollars went missing and workers were placed in harm’s way. Two executives were quoted as saying that to leave Iraq would be “premature” and would “destroy our business”,  a reference to Ericsson’s business in Iraq.

One telecom engineer, Affan, told ICIJ and its partners that he was directed to approach Islamic State militants with a letter asking for permission for Ericsson and its regional partner Asiacell to work in Mosul. Affan, who worked for an Ericsson subcontractor, Orbitel Telecommunication, said that he was kidnapped by ISIS and put on house arrest for a month. He said Ericsson employees abandoned him and would not answer his frantic phone calls during his ordeal. Orbitel declined to comment.

The Ericsson List probe also found that the company engaged in corrupt practices in Iraq even as it was negotiating with U.S. prosecutors to settle charges related to bribery in five other countries.

In global 5G race, telecom giants resort to bribery and other alleged abuses

ERICSSON LIST, Ericsson Report

Competing to dominate infrastructure in battleground states like Iraq, Ericsson and Huawei have been accused of using dodgy tactics to win contracts and secure control of more territory.

ICCJ Full Article

Watch: Ericsson’s secret deals in Iraq and beyond

An ICIJ investigation reveals how Ericsson dealt with ISIS and engaged in bribery and other corrupt practices to solidify its grip in Iraq.

Watch on YouTube

Leak exposes Ericsson’s secret dealings with ISIS amid Iraq corruption spree

The embattled Swedish telecom giant concealed years of bribery and fraud in the war-torn nation and grappled with undisclosed corruption allegations in more than a dozen other countries.


The records show that besides Iraq, the company examined alleged misconduct in Lebanon, Spain, Portugal and Egypt. In addition, a spreadsheet lists company probes into possible bribery, money laundering and embezzlement by employees in Angola, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Brazil, China, Croatia, Libya, Morocco, the United States and South Africa. These probes have not been previously disclosed.


About the Ericsson List investigation

ICIJ, together with 30 media partners in 22 countries, spent months investigating leaked Ericsson documents that detail alleged corrupt practices in 15 countries, including in Iraq where the Swedish telecom giant may have made payments to ISIS.


The revelations come amid fierce industry competition, especially with Chinese power player Huawei, for control of telecom networks in the 21st century.

The leaked documents include 73 pages of the explosive 79-page internal report, which presented the findings of a fraud investigation into an Iraqi project called Peroza. The report was prepared with the help of Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP, an international law firm based in New York. The report, while damning, often fails to reach specific conclusions, which suggests an incomplete review of some of the most explosive allegations.

Map Of Infected Areas



An Iraqi engineer says telecom giant Ericsson made him deliver a message to the notorious terrorist group. He’s never been the same.

ICCJ Ericsson List

Sweden’s anti-corruption agency launches investigation into suspicious Ericsson payments in Iraq

Ericsson List

Ericsson is facing a preliminary investigation from Sweden’s National Anti-Corruption Unit as pressure continues to mount over the company’s handling of an alleged yearslong bribery spree in Iraq

ICCJ Ericsson List

Embattled Ericsson discloses new fines from US ‘likely’ after Iraq corruption


Ericsson confirmed Thursday that it will likely face new fines for failing to fully disclose its corruption in Iraq, including dealings with the terrorist Islamic State group, to the U.S. Department of Justice.

In a statement included with the release of the company’s first-quarter earnings, Swedish telecom giant said it was in talks with the DOJ over its findings that the company had breached the terms of a 2019 criminal settlement of bribery and other corruption charges.

ICCJ Ericsson List

Angry shareholders sanction Ericsson chiefs over Iraq corruption scandal

Ericsson’s shareholders handed chief executive Börje Ekholm an unusual rebuke on Tuesday, voting to hold him accountable for the telecom giant’s mishandling of the Iraq bribery scandal and revelations about possible payments to the Islamic State terror group.

Shareholders, including the giant Swedbank Robur asset manager and a group representing small investors, refused to discharge Ekholm and the company’s board of directors from liability for the previous year; that means Ekholm and other board members could be held personally liable for their actions.


US securities regulator opens probe into Ericsson’s conduct in Iraq


The Swedish company is now under investigation by the SEC, as well as the Justice Department, on matters described in a 2019 internal Iraq bribery report that was leaked to ICIJ.


Published by J.Anand

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