How We Tracked Secret Oil Deliveries to North Korea

Featured in New York Times

Project Sandstone


For a Visual Investigations project that looked at violations of United Nations sanctions, more than a dozen journalists examined a maze of connections. But we started with one ship.

Christoph Koettl at the New York Times talked with the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI), about its planned report, published jointly with the Center for Advanced Defense Studies (C4ADS), a nonprofit organisation that researches global conflict, that would include a systematic analysis on illicit oil deliveries to North Korea and would identify specific ships.

Christoph then started to dive into the reporting. He wanted to focus on one ship to represent the larger story about how North Korea gets oil on the sly. Watch the video below for the findings.

How a Mysterious Ship Helps North Korea Evade Oil Sanctions | Visual Investigations