Martina Walker Guevara, deputy director of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalism, says the ICIJ pitched the Panama Papers to CNN and 60 Minutes, but both turned them down. “We were a little disappointed, but we understood,” she told ProPublica.
The investigation, published a week ago by news organizations around the world including Fusion and Univision in the U.S., represented a staggering effort that involved the work of more than 100 newsrooms analyzing millions of leaked documents, ultimately exposed a global system of tax evasion that has implicated world leaders including Russian president Vladimir Putin and relatives of British prime minister David Cameron.
Walker, the editor who coordinated the work, says CNN was offered the project, and at first “said yes, but then they said no. They decided to pursue their own investigation rather than join ours.”
CBS News’ 60 Minutes said no as well. “In the end we had Univision and Fusion,” Walker said. “We had worked with both of them in previous investigations.”